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'Mind boggling' Epping shop sells six types of plunger
Where can you buy six types of plunger, three types of tagine and a paper log briquette maker?
The answer is House 2 Home in High Street, Epping, which stocks around 7,000 items from kettles to keyholes.
Pravin Vadher, 60, has been in the retail industry for 35 years and has run House 2 Home from its current site for five years with his wife Nayna and daughter Jessi.
He said: The amount of different items we sell is mind boggling.
"Sometimes we don't realise we have run out of something until someone asks for it."
As well as the huge variety of stock on offer, Mr Vadher believes customer service is the driving force behind its success.
He said: “We’ve learnt that customer service has to be the top priority.
“We used to run a shop in Loughton and we still get customers coming from Loughton to shop here or even just to see us.
“We offer photocopying because nobody else does. It doesn’t pay but it is a service our customers appreciate and it brings people into the shop.”
Perhaps the most bizarre item Mr Pravin sold was a 12-inch, plaster statue of Albert Einstein.
Mr Vadher said: “A man came in and asked for a statue of Einstein but I couldn’t get hold of one from anywhere.
“In the end I did sell him one that I found on my travels.
“About a week later another man came in and asked for one but I said there was no way I could get another one.”
The businessman explained the shop's stock changes about four times of year.
At Christmas there is a focus on items which are popular presents, February and spring sees more gardening items stocked, summer sees a rise in DIY products and paddling pools and winter a rise in ponchos, sledges and heaters.
Umbrellas and wellies are stocked all year round.
Shopping habits have changed in the last five years and the businessman explained that a fad for Buddha statues two or three years ago has now been replaced by an increase in people growing vegetables.
"More people are coming in buying trowells and spades for gardening, but it's now more food based than flowers," he said.
"I think it's partly to do with the economic situation."
Mr Vadher, who lives in Borders Lane, Loughton, has enjoyed working in Epping.
He said: “Epping High Street is one of the friendliest places I have worked.
“I need to thank the shops here because they are always happy to recommend us and we try to do the same.
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