A family-run shop is set to close after nearly 38 years of trading in Watford’s town centre.

The last day of sales for Sweet Time in the High Street will be on June 29, having been opened since August 1985.

Harry Kapuria, 42, who is the owner’s son, told the Watford Observer the shop is closing down because the landlord wants it back.

At the same time, his parents have decided to retire.

Watford Observer: The store will close on June 29.The store will close on June 29. (Image: Newsquest)

Harry said: “It’s quite sad to be honest. It’s been in the family for a long time.

“My brother and I work here full time now, but when we were children, we used to come here and help out every weekend, bank holiday and summer holidays.”

Harry’s parents did not have a holiday until he and his brother were old enough to run the shop on their own in the early 2000s.

“Dad did not have a day off in over 25 years, he worked seven days a week,” Harry said.

In the years the shop has been open, the family has seen many changes.

Harry said: “I remember when I was a child, I was given a hard hat and allowed to see inside when they were building the Harlequin.

“But we really have noticed the difference since John Lewis has closed down.

“There are fewer people shopping, you might see lots of people, but they don’t have lots of bags like they used too.”

Watford Observer: The Harlequin is now called atria Watford.The Harlequin is now called atria Watford. (Image: .)

Having gone through two recessions the shop has kept going due to “perseverance,” Harry said.

Like many small businesses, Covid hit the family hard and they had to eat into much of their savings.

“But the fact it’s a family business means we have had to all put in our time with very little outside help.”

The announcement of the closure has caused some customers to be “shocked”.

“Some of them come in to buy certain products, such as alcohol that aren’t easy to buy anywhere else,” he explained.

He said: “They have assumed we are moving to another premises but we aren’t, once business is over, we are out.”