Mr. Virk at his counter
41 Northfield Street
The Arboretum
Worcester , WR1 1NS

(Mrs. Virk was in the picture, but serving someone)

their part in our lives

Mr. Virk
Mr. Virk – Sept 2022

The Arboretum in Worcester has existed since around 1800 – that’s 220 years – so it’s hard to get your head around the fact that Mr. and Mrs. Virk have lived and worked here for 39 years – nealy a fifth of that time.

Whether you needed bread, milk, cheese, a newspaper or magazine or fresh veg and a roll of sticky tape with some deoderant, a beer and some bread – they were there.
If there was anything going on in the Arbo, they would know (and care) about it and could have a smiley conversation with customers about anything.

If one of us goes to Virks for something, we report back to the other like a game of Cluedo … “Mr. Virk, the weather and the cricket results“.

So many folks have come and gone over the years (please leave your anecdotes and tributes, memories in the comments, below) and have so many nice things to say about these wonderful people that have literally been at the heart of the Arboretum all this time. Seeing other shops (and pubs) around gradually fold or move out, they have stuck to it. Owning a few shops on the Arbo, they had a vested interest in the goings on – out of caring not being nosey.

They have not been strangers to the news media as you can see from the wonderful Worcester MELA initiative interviewed them (around 6:20 into it).

Clip courtesy of Worcester MELA – “Worcester Voices” – 19 Mar 2022

The Worcester News too – Mr. and Mrs. Virk get everywhere.

And of course they are in mentioned (and photographed) in The Arboretum Story (although out of print, the original research photographs and related documents are archived at The Hive).

Their welcoming smiles and friendly voices only rarely broken by the scarey side of Mrs. V chastising someone for trying to ‘help reduce their stock-take’. Or Mr. V when you got onto cricket or politics. Dedicated to the community and the people in the Arboretum, they will still be around, only not as much but will certainly be sorely missed.

See the leaving card presented on Tuesday 6th September 2022, only weeks after recognising their 39 years serving the community that they were so much a part of.

Thank you Mr. and Mrs. Virk
and the wonderful family you raised.

Please add a comment, anecdote, testimonial …

Arboretum residents – old and new

11 thoughts on “End of an Arboretum era …

  1. Good Luck in the future to both of you from Jane, Barry and Sam.

  2. “… please pass on my best regards to Mr and Mrs Virk; I remember them both well and with pleasure” – former chair of the Arboretum Residents’ Association

  3. Mr and Mrs Virk – your dedication and commitment to the local community in the Arboretum and Worcester more widely has been second to none. Over the years you kept local councillors ‘on their toes’, always acting as champions for the local area. You really will be missed. Good luck for the future.

    Joy and George Squires (former city councillors)

  4. “It has always been a pleasure to be in and around the Arboretum where Mr. and Mrs. Virk have always been mentioned with fondness and affection. A sad day for the Arboretum, but a deserved rest for you.” – Karen Lewing

  5. Best wishes for the future and thanks for being there for so many years for us all.

    Robin & Paula

  6. I own number 37 opposite them.
    I have lived there from my birth 1984 – 1999
    My parents lived there before me but don’t know exact date.
    Mr & Mrs Virk have worked extremely hard & lived on top of the shop all them years.
    They deserve a good retirement.

    – Malik Abdul – was 37 Northfield Strteet

  7. Thank you for making us feel part of the community! Good luck in the future no 40 lower Chestnut Street Helen & Dave

  8. I wish you all the very best in your retirement. Lovely family. Mr Virk would always make you smile and Mrs Virk was a host of information. They were very welcoming . Stu had his first job there. Verinder was a lovely guy and fun to talk to.
    All sorts of memories. Good Luck to you all.

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