The Bobbys to Folca book front cover Photo: Ray Duff…

Words and pictures by Ray Duff… Hundreds of people visited Folkestone Museum, prior to Christmas, for the launch event of local historian Vince Williams’ latest Folkestone history book featuring the former and much loved, Debenham’s store in Sandgate Road which closed down in January 2020.

The event was arranged by the Folkestone Local History Society, but if you missed out, the books are still available from the Folkestone Museum.

Vince William with one of the Bobbys history books as Mark Hourahane peruses his copy Photo: Ray Duff

Vince worked with the outgoing staff to photograph and record the whole of the interior of the building, and also located some original floor plans.

These, as well as many historic pictures of the store inside and out, from it’s heyday as Bobbys through to its new name of Folca, and the latest plans for its re-use are featured in the volume.

People of all ages have been purchasing the book! Photo: Ray Duff

Highly detailed and well written throughout with many reminiscences and local news stories, the book has proved very popular with locals who shopped or snacked in the cafe, as well as former staff members who recalled working in the many departments over the years.

Debenhams Department Store in Folkestone pictured in 2019, shortly before its closure Photo: Hawkinge Gazette

The book is available from the Folkestone Local History Society via their website.

Paperback- £10

Limited edition Hardback £15.

The book was funded by the Folkestone Local History Society (FLHS) and the Kent Archaeological Society’s Allen Grave Local History Fund.


By Ed

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