BRADFORD’S beloved department store, Busbys, delighted crowds every year with its Christmas parade.

The procession, led by Father Christmas and Mother Christmas on horseback, went from the city centre up to the store on Manningham Lane. Once Santa arrived at Busbys, children queued at his grotto for a gift.

The popular department store was opened by Ernest Busby in 1930 and by the 1950s the family business had more than 800 staff, with branches in Ilkley and Harrogate. It had a variety of departments as well as a restaurant, café, library, hairdresser, beauty salon, laundry and record counter.

Debenhams took over the store in 1958 and it closed 20 years later. Busbys came to a sorry end on August 30, 1979 when a huge fire destroyed the old building. Around 100 firemen tackled the blaze, but they couldn’t save the once grand building - and the much-loved store was left in a heap of smouldering rubble.