A touch of magic and sparkle arrived in Aberdeen when The Disney Store opened nearly quarter of a century ago.
Big and little kids alike fell under the store’s charm when it opened in the Bon Accord Centre in September 1997, with blockbusting sales reported in its first fortnight.
Bringing the wonderful world of Disney to Aberdeen, shoppers were guaranteed fun and laughter, with wall-to-wall screenings of favourite films and the chance to meet characters.
As well as being a haven for children desperate to snap up the latest Disney memorabilia, the shop was a destination for the young at heart captivated by the brand’s enduring appeal.
The cuddly toy department with characters piled high was always a favourite with little customers, and when the Aberdeen store opened, it even had individual cuddly versions of the 101 Dalmations.
Many Aberdeen children enjoyed school trips to the popular shop while others will have fond memories of saving their pocket money to buy the latest must-have toy.
Whether it was a character from a Disney classic like Snow White, Woody from Toy Story or the Elsa the ice princess from Frozen, the shop stocked it all.
After the sad news that the shop will not reopen, we open our archives to look back at some of the smiles the Disney Store brought to Aberdeen over the years.
There was a rush at the Aberdeen store in the year 2000 when a limited edition ‘McMickey Mouse’ clad in a Blackwatch tartan kilts and Stewart tartan sash – complete with bagpipes – hit the shelves.
At the time, a member of staff at the branch said people from “all over the country” had descended on the shop to buy the Highland mice, but they had proved particularly popular with tourists.
There was great excitement in 2010 when the Aberdeen Disney Store underwent a huge revamp – one of only five in Europe to benefit from the magical redesign.
Unveiled by Mickey and Minnie Mouse, it was the only store in Scotland at that time to feature a large-screen theatre area, so children could watch their favourite characters on screen as they shopped.
Another popular addition to the premises was a magic mirror in a castle that allowed youngsters to transform into Disney princesses.
Then store manager Gaye Dench said the transformation was one of the most exciting developments in the store’s history.
When it came to Christmas or the release of a new Disney film, there would often by queues of keen fans waiting to get in, and it was often top of the list for bargain-hunting Boxing Day sales shoppers.