Thursday, 25 February 2016

Cutting a dash at Dexters: by appointment and at £16 a time  
Dexters Chop Shop, which opened last July, bringing to Silsden upmarket grooming, is seeking a second barber as part of a longer-term expansion. Owner Josh Matthew (pictured above) has defied doubters by showing that there is a demand in Silsden for hair-dressing with the kind of panache that offers customers ambience,  a whisky, an ale or coffee, operates by appointment and charges £16 for a standard cut.

The Chop Shop, at No. 27 Kirkgate, is named after Dexter, the family's pet border collie.
Dexters is especially popular with the under-35s, the so-called metrosexual generation that is comfortable with the whole concept of male grooming. The booming UK market is forecast to be worth £1 billion by 2018. The soaring popularity of beards, moustaches and stubble is of course more good news for hairdressers. While Dexters' rates are about double the prices charged by local barbers, they are well below what men would expect to pay in city-centre salons.
The Chop Shop name only incidentally references the past: No. 27 Kirkgate had been a butcher's for at least 100 years. The photograph above shows Eric Stoney during the 1970s. He had followed Douglas Thornber. Another well-known butcher there was John Smithies, who took over the business after Mr Stoney retired. 
The shop was a butcher's at the time of this photograph in or about the late 1800s, when the proprietor was Sam Bottomley, who was known as Sam Bod. The photograph was published in Neil Cathey's "A Pictorial History of 'Old Cobbydale'."