AN East Oxford parade that was in danger of turning into 'desolation row' was given a new lease of life in May 1982 with a new arrival.

The new branch of Wychwood Stationers opened in one of the former co-operative shops on the south side of Cowley Road.

In the previous two years, the Co-op had closed two shops and Bridgers electrical discount shop had opened and closed there.

However Gordon Moss, who had opened a new branch of Wychwood Stationers, gave only half a vote of confidence to the Cowley Road.

This was because of problems with access and parking restrictions which materialised since he opened.

He said: "I shall join the traders' association and help chase the council up."