Linens ’n’ Things is an unassuming shop on the High Street, situated between Burger & Sauce and Loco Lounge. At this point, the shop has been in Kings Heath for 25 years – and the owner, Latif has been here the whole time. He came to England from Pakistan in 1997, so he set up the shop after only a year in England, in 1998. His wife was born in England, and her family were involved in the business of bedding and curtains, so they had some experience, but starting a business like that right away still entailed a large risk for the family.
Originally living in London, Latif realised there was no way to set up shop in the metropolis as it was simply too expensive, and so he settled for the next best thing – Kings Heath, Birmingham! As is typical of the family-run businesses of this time, the family lived upstairs while working the shop during the day, which allowed Latif to live in his dream house on Kings Heath High Street.
Over time, the business landscape on the High Street has changed, and many businesses similar to Latif’s have moved away or shut down. But Linens ’n’ Things are still around, not only because of their loyal, local customers who have known them for years, but also their willingness to move with the times, making use of platforms like Amazon and eBay to sell their wares, in addition to their bricks-and-mortar storefront.
After running his business for 25 years, Latif is looking forward to enjoying his retirement. He isn’t yet sure about what’s next for the business, whether it will be sold off, passed on to his children, or something else entirely. Nonetheless, he’s grateful that he’s managed to live in his dream house on the High Street, with a big garden, and live a good life, which is something that we could surely all learn from.
Latif’s favourite businesses: As a big fan of DIY, his favourite businesses in the local area include Kings Heath DIY and the other hardware stores.
Contact: You can find Linens ’n’ Things at 36 High St, King’s Heath, B14 7JT, and their phone number is 0121 444 7862