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Newbury barber celebrates 60 years in the town

Melvyn West has trimmed and styled the heads of Newbury residents for "generations"

Chris Ord

Reporter:

Chris Ord

Newbury barber celebrates 60 years in the town

MELVYN West has been trimming the hair for generations of Newbury residents and last week he celebrated 60 years in the profession.

Mr West, owner of Sections Hair Studios in London Road, was born and raised in Newbury and said it has been a privilege to have welcomed customers from his home town into his salons since 1956.

“I’ve enjoyed every second of it,” he said.

“I’ve had customers come in when they were just a boy, giving them their first haircut. Now they’re grown up I’m still cutting their hair, and their children’s hair, and in some cases, even their grandchildren’s hair.

“It’s been a real privilege, it honestly has.”

The 75-year-old has owned a number of salons across Newbury and Thatcham over the years and has seen styles come and go.

However, he says he’s not ready to lay down his scissors and hairdryer just yet.

He said: “I have no intentions of giving up. I’m 75 now and still have seven years left on the lease so we’ll see how I feel when I’m 82.

“I still enjoy it now as much as I did in the 50s and 60s, you see the all the styles coming back in now as well.

“I remember in the 50s you’d give them a short back and sides and leave it longer on top, slap a bit of Brylcreem on it and they’d be happy.

“All the young ones now think I’m an old fuddy duddy, but they don’t realise the styles now are more or less just a different version of the old styles.”

The veteran barber celebrated his 60-year milestone along with his staff with a meal and a special bottle of Champagne last weekend.

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