Shock death of popular shop owner
TRIBUTES have been paid to a former newsagent and sweet shop owner who died just six weeks after being diagnosed with cancer.
Melvyn Dickinson ran a newsagent shop on Union Road in Oswaldtwistle in the 1980s before setting up J M Dickinson sweet shop on Burnley Road in Accrington from 1988 to 2002.
The Accrington Stanley season ticket holder passed away at Greycroft Residential Home in Accrington on Thursday, October 25, aged 78.
His daughter Helen Dickinson said he had only been diagnosed with cancer six weeks earlier.
She said: “It came as a big shock as he was as fit as a fiddle. The cancer was all over.”
Around 100 people attended his funeral service this week at Cambridge Street Methodist Church in Accrington where he had been a parishioner for around 50 years.
Over the decades he had served as treasurer, chief steward and worked on several committees.
Helen, who now lives in London, said: “He was very popular and we’ve had so many cards.
“He was Accrington born and bred and when he had the sweet shop in Accrington he knew that area very well as he was brought up around Dowry Street.
“He would have kids come into his shop and they would grow up and then bring their own kids in.
“He had trained as a tailor but went into retail and enjoyed running his own business.
“He had a very wry sense of humour and was very quiet but you knew he was there. He had a presence about him and would analyse things. He was a good negotiator.
Helen said her father ran the newsagents in Oswaldtwistle for five years but didn’t enjoy the early hours.
She said: “You would have to be up at 5am and if the paper boys and girls didn’t turn up then he would have to do them or I would.
“I helped out in the shop and ran it on Sunday mornings.
“Everybody used to come in and have a good gossip.” Melvyn attended several matches at Accrington Stanley this season and was also at the Wham Stadium last season when the Reds were crowned champions.
He leaves his wife of 52 years Margaret and was father of Helen and the late Andrew.
SEE p12 for obituary