A 53 year-old lighting business is set to close.

On October 20 the owners of Argus Lighting will hand back keys to the shop after more than half a century in business.

Having first set up in Woodford, the business boasted six shops at its peak with an outlet opened 43 years ago on Epping High Street.

Owner Humphrey Wheeler explained how competition from the internet and high rents proved too much for the business.

He said: "Business was very good for a long time because of the service we offered and the selection we had.

"While it was a good business to be in, it was hard work.

"The internet is closing everything now.

"Also, we have had high overheads.

"We pay about £1,500 a week for just rent. By the end we were just about breaking even."

The 79 year-old started the business with his wife Linda, 73, after designing lighting on an industrial scale.

Mr Wheeler added: "I started in the 50s working for a large company as a lighting designer.

"That was doing lighting for large projects, like a steel works in India and a tunnel in Venezuela.

"Then I decided to have a go myself."

The '70s proved a boom period for the chain, until the three day week and electricity restrictions forced the lights to be switched off for large period of the days towards the end of the decade.

"I had to show people the lights using a torch," the father-of-two said.

"There is a certain amount of sadness that comes with closing.

"The fond memories are some of the nice customers. We have had some terrible ones, but mostly nice."

Mr Wheeler plans to spend his retirement with his wife playing golf, travelling and spending time at his home in Devon.

A 30 per cent off closing down sale is ongoing.