A legendary barber who has carried out hundreds of thousands of haircuts will hang up his clippers for the final time this week - after more than half a century in the trade.
Norman Hayden has operated from single room premises on Whalley Road, Clayton-le-Moors since 1967, with generations of men passing through the doors of his mid-terrace shop.
He estimates he has executed more than 300,000 haircuts in that time, all using the same solitary barber’s chair.
Once voted ‘the most popular person in Clayton’, Norman, who lives at Great Harwood caravan park with wife Julia, 68, will retire on Saturday, May 26 having sold the business to new owner Laura Jane Cross.
Norman said his career had given him ‘happiness and a purpose’.
He said: “I started out aged 15 at Jack Thornton’s barbers on Barnes Street, before taking on this place on my own in 1967.
"I’ve always worked alone, never had any staff or apprentices.
"I chose barbering because I didn’t want to have to get up early to work in a factory and it’s given me a good life.
"I still use my original barber’s chair, although it has been re-upholstered a few times.”
The 69-year-old calculates he has worked on an average of 25 cuts a day, five days a week.
He said: “I’ve made some good friends over the years and seen people who came in as lads for their first haircuts bring their sons and grandsons.
“There was a poll by the children at St Mary’s school a few years ago for the most popular person in Clayton and I won, which was nice.
"They did a similar one at Mount Pleasant a little later and I came second to Paddy the roadsweeper, which made me smile.
"I’d like to give my thanks and best wishes to each and every one of my customers over the years and I hope Laura gets as much happiness out of her career as I did.”
Jeff Drinkwater has been having his hair cut by Norman for 48 years.
Jeff, 56, said: “I first had my haircut by Norman in 1970, along with my two brothers, my dad Raymond and grandad Billy.
“Apart from my time in the Army he’s the only person to have cut my hair. I know everyone wishes him a long and happy retirement.”
With his new found spare time Norman intends to take more country walks with his labrador Flash as well as spending his Saturdays cheering on Accrington Stanley from the terraces.