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Present from the past for Highgate shopkeeper forced out of business

PUBLISHED: 13:40 23 February 2016 | UPDATED: 13:40 23 February 2016

Raj Kara-Rajani holds the picture he received from members of the Highgate Society which depicts the same view of the High Street in the early 1900s. Picture: Polly Hancock

Raj Kara-Rajani holds the picture he received from members of the Highgate Society which depicts the same view of the High Street in the early 1900s. Picture: Polly Hancock

Archant

A community pulled together to give an independent shopkeeper a picture of his store from more than 100 years ago before he closed down on Saturday.

Highgate Society chairwoman Jan Morgan and members presented Raj Kara-Rajani, of The Corner Shop, in Highgate High Street, with the framed image from 1905 last Thursday. The delicatessen and newsagents closed down two days later after a £50,000 rent hike forced Mr Kara-Rajani to stop trading after more than 30 years in business.

Villagers now fear for the future of the independent shop, which has been a grocers for about 200 years. Mr Kara-Rajani has been a loyal friend to the Highgate Society over the years, providing croissants for volunteers working at the annual Fair in the Square, and acting as guardian of the key for the society’s headquarters, in South Grove. “We wanted to thank him,”Ms Morgan said.

“He was very much part of the community, we are going to miss him.”

Mr Kara-Rajani said: “The whole society came to wish me good luck, they were very kind to me.”

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