It’s as much a fixture of Granville Street as those drunken 19 year-old suburban kids and Bruno Gerussi‘s plaque on the Walk of Fame; Kripps Pharmacy is leaving town, and the famous neon “DRUGS” sign that’s stood there for decades will be taken down.
Recently the famous “Drugs” sign was vandalized and the owner, Mr. Edward Thorpe, discovered it smashed to bits by beer bottles. The family-run business has had enough of what Granville Street has become and is moving to Kerrisdale as of December 1, 2007. The neon sign won’t be going with the store due to bylaws at the new location so that electric piece of Vancouver history will end up on some trash heap somewhere.
I originally read this in the Globe and Mail over lunch today, however I cannot find an electronic copy on their site. In the story Mr. Thorpe (son in-law of Agnes and Stephen Kripps) reminisces about better days on the street where every shop was independently run and there wasn’t a 5,000 seat licensed liquor joint capacity. “It’s the creeping crap of bureaucracy. It’s getting harder and harder to do business,” said Thorpe in the Globe and Mail.
Granville had its heyday as “Theatre Row” with movie houses, diners and hat shops – now apparently it’s for police, thugs and loaded weapons. After 60 years, Kripps just no longer fits in with Granville’s “Entertainment District” persona. Best of luck to the local pioneers of anti-oxidant treatments in their new Vancouver location (5413 West Boulevard).