POP TO THE SHOPS: I inherited the keys to my house from the previous owners and if I look closely they are marked Tony Andrews and there’s a phone number. That number has changed but the locksmith shop in Muswell Hill which made them is still there, still known to locals as Tony Andrews, but with a new sign which says Gallalock.
It was Len Andrews, Tony’s father who started the business 40 years ago as a cobbler and shoe repair shop with key cutting service. His traditional skills were passed on to the staff and this basic craft approach has grown to include a myriad of related skills such as alarms, engraving, orthopaedic sole inserts, car registration plates and emergency locksmithing. Everyone in Muswell Hill has used them at some point on their lives: the last time I went in was for a pair of extra-long and strong, coloured, shoe laces. My younger self admired the array of trophies waiting to be engraved. It was frankly a bit of a shock to know that anyone could just buy a trophy and have their name put on it.I swore that one day, when I was old enough, I would do just that – maybe that time has come!
Gallalock 299 Muswell Hill Broadway, Muswell Hill, London N10 1BY
Tel: 020 8444 7300 Open Mon- Fri 8.30am-6pm, Sat. (am-6pm, Sunday 11am-5pm 24 Hour emergency locksmiths service.