Thornton Bobby was originally a music shop with branches in Cliftonville and Margate and has been trading for over a hundred years. The main branch in Cliftonville sold a wide range of musical insruments. The original property was understood to have been owned by a local Doctor, whose stables for his horse(s) can still be seen at the rear of the shop.
With the change from a private dwelling to a retail establishment an extension was built to the rear of the property to accomodate further stock. Three small rooms were also built at the far end of the shop to accomodate pianos, they were used as practice rooms for individuals who had no piano of their own or for private lessons. The rooms were hired 'by the hour' and were blessed with a high degree of sound-proofing. Their location can still be seen at the far end of the shop.
The post war boom in radio receivers saw Thornton Bobby become the local agent for Murphy radiograms and ultimately led on to television sales.
A second branch was located within Margate and was on the site now occupied by Lloyds TSB facing onto the main road. The property was demolished to make way for the new Arlington shopping centre.
This page will be updated in the future with more accurate information.