Bicycle: Johnson's Grocery

Friday, 01 April 2016

Shoppers at Johnson’s Grocery will recall seeing this grocery delivery bicycle parked outside the Colombo Street shop for years. Shop owner Colin Johnson always made sure to keep at least one tyre flat so it would be harder to steal. Thankfully no one ever tried.

2017.52.2 Johnsons bicycle

Johnson's Grocery bicycle 2017.52.2

A staple feature of Colombo Street for over 60 years, Johnson’s Grocery was the place to go for imported goods. Whether you were after Italian fruitcake, Devon custard or Swiss chocolate, you could find it at Johnson’s.

When Stan Johnson bought the business from Leigh and Co in 1949 it was one of several groceries in Christchurch. As supermarkets increased in popularity, smaller business could not compete. Johnson’s survived by switching to imported goods and keeping the small grocery store layout. After losing their Colombo Street site following the 2010/2011 Earthquakes, Johnson’s moved into a shipping container at the Re:Start Mall. The store closed in 2016 when Johnson's Grocery bicycle owner Colin Johnson retired.