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In the spotlight

PUBLISHED: 16:43 28 June 2009 | UPDATED: 14:29 05 October 2010

Abdul Shohid is in the spotlight

Abdul Shohid is in the spotlight

ABDUL Shohid is co-manager of Rose Locksmith which opened on Bethnal Green Road in 1938. The business has been in his family for three generations. The 27-year-old took over the shop with his brother Kamrul Hasan, 35, three years ago. His uncle, Jeffrey R

ABDUL Shohid is co-manager of Rose Locksmith which opened on Bethnal Green Road in 1938. The business has been in his family for three generations.

The 27-year-old took over the shop with his brother Kamrul Hasan, 35, three years ago. His uncle, Jeffrey Rose, known by customers simply as "Rose" was looking to take a step back ahead of retirement. Originally the shop was run by the brother's grandfather.

The shop is best known for key-cutting, bicycle parts and paints. The shop has a paint mixing machine which can create countless colours.

Where are you from?

I was born in Stepney and I grew up on the Ocean Estate, where I still live.

I live with my wife, my one-year-old son, and my parents, three brothers and two sisters. We live in two flats, which have been knocked into one. My family is originally from Bangladesh.

How did you end up at Rose Locksmith?

When Tower Hamlets Community Recycling Consortium, which I used to work for, got taken over I thought it was time to move on. My brother already worked at another DIY shop, EMJAY, in Bethnal Green Road, but wanted to start out for himself and was looking for a partner, so here I am.

What do you like about the East End?

The best thing this side of Shoredith is the multi-cultural side, everyone is a bit more laid back. The further East you go the denser it gets with particular communities. Here there is a good mix of people. People are friendly and neighbours look out for each other.

The area has lots of individual shops where you get a personal service instead of chain shops where it's all about profit. There is also a good nightlife.

What don't you like about the East End?

The only thing I don't like is when there is a tube strike and this area gets so congested with traffic. Most customers come here by vehicle to pick their paint or other heavy goods up, so if the traffic is bad they get put off.

Otherwise it's a fantastic area. But because I've never known anything else, maybe I don't notice bad things, such as the gangs and drunks, as much as people who come from outside. I grew up with it so I'm used to it.

Where would you go if out up East?

I would take my kid, Shafi, to one of the parks in Stepney or to see his grand mum in Bethnal Green. I'm here six out of the seven days the shop is open, so when I'm off I spend as much time as I can with the family.


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