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Barnsley's Ice Cream Vans Face Bleak Future

Tuesday August 6 2013


Town's ice cream vans face tough future Town's ice cream vans face tough future


ICE cream vans that have been part of the Barnsley summer for decades are in meltdown.

Fuel costs, supermarket competition and the gloomy economy are all contributing to tough times for the vans, many of which are family-run businesses.

Rossi's is owned by Remo Rossi, 50, who says he may be the last of the line in the family business, as his two children have shown no interest in joining.

Brian Martin, of Danny's Ices in Shafton also has two sons who are not wishing to follow in his footsteps. Brian, 57, who has been running his van for 15 years around Athersley, Monk Bretton and Carlton, said: "It's getting more difficult, especially when supermarkets can sell ice cream a lot cheaper."

Most vans have diversified into crisps, pop and sweets. Rob Barlow, who is in his 40s and runs Snow White in Grimethorpe, said it had even been known for vans to sell Pot Noodles.

He said: "Everywhere you pull up they sell ice cream, like in garages and supermarkets. How can you compete?"

Rob has been running his business for 20 years and before that, his father-in-law ran it.

Remo Rossi, who still manufactures his own ice-cream, has seven vans compared to a dozen 15 years ago. From his Park Road-based premises, he covers the whole of Barnsley but says he has to do twice as many stops to make it worthwhile.

He said: "If business was as good as it was 25 years ago I'd be retired. But now the price of fuel has gone up and wages aren't moving."

Remo's parents came to Barnsley from Italy in 1969 and Remo, who sold his first cone when he was about ten, took over the business from his dad in 1990.

He said: "The economy is not good and people have no spare money. We're working harder and longer and not taking as much money."

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Reply Posted by Tony on Tuesday August 6 2013 at 13:11
Rossi is still my favourite when I was a child used to love there cider Lollies it's still a great British tradition and rossis have been so popular in Barnsley for years . You won't go far wrong with a rossis ice cream unlike the whipped ice cream rossis is still made to there family's recipe and beats whipped hands down . Keep it going its part of barnsleys heritage rossis ....

Reply Posted by Sally on Tuesday August 6 2013 at 17:43
you could get 20 B&H's as well with your bits and juice

Reply Posted by lol on Sunday August 11 2013 at 12:55
yes all smuggeled

Reply Posted by Steve on Friday October 11 2013 at 02:16
Rossi is the best and he's got a great cafe too

Reply Posted by roy johnson on Tuesday August 6 2013 at 13:31
Rossis ice cream was the best if it closes I will be sad to see it go

Reply Posted by alison on Tuesday August 6 2013 at 14:20
Georges ices are the best by far :)

Reply Posted by owd fred on Tuesday August 6 2013 at 14:42
not a patch on hastelows, who used to be based near where the town centre Morrisons is,
they were a good old fashioned ice cream maker, real shame when they closed down,

Reply Posted by Jamie on Saturday January 4 2014 at 02:18
Thats my family :) my uncle still does the ice cream buisness

Reply Posted by peter on Tuesday August 6 2013 at 14:43
Does anybody remember Palfryman's, Hastelow's, Pickles's and Danny Oates. All sadly part of our history.

Reply Posted by Darron on Tuesday August 6 2013 at 17:35
Danny`s & Danny Oates

My Great grandad founded it back in 1886 my dad was the last person to make it in the factory up brierley. Icecream business always was a hard job. I remember when my dad had to start making inb from scratch at 4.30am just so a fleet of 12 + vans could go out. its not like today putting cream/milk in a machine or opening a box.

Reply Posted by Mark Stephenson on Tuesday June 24 2014 at 08:33
Hi Darron - I loved this ice cream, as did the rest of my family - just wondering if it is possible to recreate it - did your Dad pass down the recipe for it to you??

Reply Posted by mustapha phag on Tuesday August 6 2013 at 20:56
Whats with the history lesson of ice cream. who cares.
And for the grassers.
You should be ashamed.
Ice cream vans in the past have made a killing nowyou can get 6 for a quid at fultons. get over it

Reply Posted by Brian on Wednesday August 7 2013 at 14:44
all you write is drival captain mustacha, be positve for a change you grumpy old goat

Reply Posted by fanny fluff on Wednesday August 7 2013 at 13:26
Good riddance to the noisy pigs!! My husband works nights and they park outside my house at all hours blasting that annoying racket! Glad to see the back of the idiots!If I want ice cream I'll go to the shop for one, lucky you've not been fined for noise pollution!

Reply Posted by Old Dirty Kipper on Wednesday August 7 2013 at 23:15
Oh my days, well aren't you miserable!

Reply Posted by goatface on Monday August 12 2013 at 00:27
Well aren't you a happy little bunny! It's not the Ice cream mans fault that your husband works nights. I think you'd complain more if they came around at 3am and woke you up in the night. For gods sake, don't you remember being a kid and getting extremely excited when your mum or dad let you have an ice cream from the van? You sound like the Norris Cole of Barnsley. Cheer up. There's worse things in life than an ice cream van.

Reply Posted by ralph wiggam on Friday May 2 2014 at 09:31
Shut your stupid gob peoples got to earn a livin you should get your lazy husband out of bed

Reply Posted by joa1210 on Wednesday August 7 2013 at 21:12
Danny Oates was what i grew up with and was the most amazing icecream around. was my weekly treat. i do miss that and still talk about it to this day

Reply Posted by LiveBlackpool on Thursday September 5 2013 at 07:05
I loved Danny Oates ice cream, never tasted anything like it since. Wasn't he shut down for washing dogs in the ice cream vats? I was looking for a photo of one of the old vans.

Reply Posted by bob on Wednesday August 7 2013 at 21:12
Hate to see firms like this struggle through, our memory's of been a nip always had an ice cream van attached to them, hope you keep going strong, we have pats icecreams from grimey in cudworth and hes been going since as,far bk as i can remember he has good days and bad but you manage to get buy we would hate for pat to give in keep pushing strong..

Reply Posted by jules on Wednesday August 7 2013 at 21:18
nowts same now when we was kids ice cream vans,milkmen,paperlads/lasses, the bakery van/ fruit n veg van,pop van etc where have all these gone to now all because of greedy economy competition etc etc that put little popular business out shame to see them all go now CHILDHOOD MEMORIES thats all they seem to be now

Reply Posted by mustapha phag on Wednesday August 7 2013 at 23:04
Ill tell you where its all gone its cheaper.
Its cheaper. its cheaper for you
its cheaper for me its cheaper for everyone
it wasnt better.
You were a child moaning to your mother you wanted an icecream and she .
To be right gave in to your whims
now you fill your freezer with top quality icecream fir much less.
The milkman went the same way today you go to asda get milk for the same price or less than it was 10 years ago from the milkman but while your all talking crap remember all these dreams you fantasise when you get your wages and your filling your trolley at morrisons.....
You have now answered your own questions about where everything has gone.....and isnt it good.

Reply Posted by Danny`s Ices on Sunday August 11 2013 at 21:46
mustapha phag I am sorry i had a rant and brought you into it. i did see it as an insult and i did have a rant. I want people to know i am sorry i did not read this post
Beforehand. Sorry again

Reply Posted by Old Dirty Kipper on Wednesday August 7 2013 at 23:17
My entire life the Rossies van has come down our street, and I've watched loads of kids grow up and run down the street after it, and its gone from a bustling swarm to a handful, it's a real shame.

Although saying that, I can't imagine Mr Rossi will ever do away with the greasy spoon, its been the meeting place of many lads on a saturday morning after a night out and will probably continue to do so.


Reply Posted by tricia on Wednesday August 7 2013 at 23:24
I used 2 work 4 georges a long time ago with my dad. The hawkin trade has gone down alot.

Reply Posted by Unknown on Thursday August 8 2013 at 01:07
My mums street only gets the ice cream van on a Sunday which is rubbish and we don't get a visit at all anymore... Get a van daily into Catherine's Walk in Athersley and start visiting places you no longer visit! I know my son would be outside daily if you visited us in Birdwell

Reply Posted by Paul c on Thursday August 8 2013 at 01:10
In my humble opinion, the super markets have been to blame in part for destroying what once made this country of ours great......The community! I think my mam had the same milk man for around 30 odd years......The corner shop was a hub of gossip - She went to the same butcher every week - We had Albert Hirst pork pies.....Curly Burton's fish and chips - We played football on the island down park house near the library and all us kids pestered our mam's for an ice cream when we heard the van coming! Now it seems that it's all about take, take take. Every time I hear of a well established Barnsley business closing I feel like a small piece of what we were is being chipped away.

Reply Posted by Patricia on Thursday August 8 2013 at 07:08
My friends mother used to work at Hastelows it's so sad to see firms go. soon we'll have nothing at all, it's all the little firms that make a town, they were friendly and cared. .

Reply Posted by Jamie on Saturday January 4 2014 at 02:21
Who was your friends mother ? was my granddad that ran it :)

Reply Posted by mustapha phag on Thursday August 8 2013 at 23:13
No im not miserable im telling the truth .
As i said earlier when you go to the supermarket read what you have put again .
They are the facts admit you are the ones responsible for the little man going down hill or he wouldnt have gone. like the post office ad 15 years ago....
Use it or lose it

Reply Posted by jamie on Saturday August 10 2013 at 10:33
danny,s of brierley simply the best

Reply Posted by Danny`s ICES on Sunday August 11 2013 at 21:40
I have enjoyed reading the comments on this page, Especially the ones about it been good that its the end etc. Also the comment from mustava phag amused me.
Quote "Whats with the history lesson of ice cream. who cares.
And for the grassers.
You should be ashamed.
Ice cream vans in the past have made a killing nowyou can get 6 for a quid at fultons. get over it" Unquote.

I was referring back in the days when a community was a community, when people helped each other, when nobody had a problem and spirits were high. Unlike today when the world owes us or so many people think it does. Hard workers now are far and few between. I see many today that would sooner go through your pockets than help you out. The Ice-Cream van is a tradition like the Good Old British Pub. But let me guess the price of alcohol`s gone up thats why they are closing or its the smoking ban or some other reason when if we take a look at ourselves its US!! we are 75% to blame, The attitude of people today needs to change it seems people are only happy by getting a reaction. Yes it may look like they have caused me upset or got me in a bad mood when really they have made me feel proud i am not like them i was taught right from wrong and politeness,Sorry Jamie for posting this as a reply to your post. Thanks for remembering the business that made sure i had no holidays in the summer :-) Because it was our busy time. I would not change it for the world i was and still am proud to say i am a part of the family that brought Danny`s Ices to Barnsley

Reply Posted by LiveBlackpool on Thursday September 5 2013 at 07:08
Beautifully put Danny's Ices.
We moved to the coast and it's more like times used to be here, but still people complain and think the world owes them a living. When will people realise that you have to help yourself and others around you?

Reply Posted by neil on Sunday August 11 2013 at 17:44
I used to work for uncle George in the yard and as a driver I took the round that George used to do some very good times at Georges

Reply Posted by Tom on Sunday August 11 2013 at 23:42
Due to the way the tax system in this country works, supporting local business up Notrh, is a bit of a tricky thing due to incomes being controlled by the government and the monopoly of the big supermarkets.
We need to have a new local currency and taxation scheme to create employment and drive economic activity.
I personally propose a Barnsley Bob. We offer all unemployed, underemployed and precariously employed people a guaranteed amount of work in addition to their private sector employment that can be used to pay national taxes locally.
An unemployed or underemployed man can't buy a pint or a pack of cigarettes etc.
Might as well offer him work and let him have a discounted pint or pack of fags. You could offer discounts of so called luxury items that accrue VAT.

The tax vouchers would be accepted by all freely and spent freely. We could be able to buy ice cream from a local company, instead of some organization dominated by the monopoly of venture capital.

Reply Posted by mustapha phag on Monday August 12 2013 at 00:25
People themselves are the demise of all businesses i know my family were well known in the 60s .
Wombwell was one of the first to have a supermarket and one of the failings of shops is that in th 50s there was a shop on every corner. with s few shelves.
then we started gettin fruit in that no on had seen before in winter from all over the world .
Small shops couldnt cope with the amount of produce.
You needed bigger shops longer shelves
and it was cheaper people thought it was christmas every day .
You look today at the little shop. he buys one box of each flavour crisps and sell them at 60p. a supermarket can buy 20 boxes of each flavour. in multipacks of 12 for 2:99.
Now which one do you buy.
while everybody keeps looking backwards
what would you do if the government said no one is allowed to have a mobile phone in this country . Everyone under the age of 60 would sink into an oblivion of depression and i mean big style.
And that is just one itemi n your life.
Most people would go without food. or give there kids away than go without there phone.......yes you would..
So you either go forward with it and forget the past or reopen lunatic assylums...i know what id rather do

Reply Posted by Donna on Monday August 12 2013 at 10:35
Perhaps if they weren't selling knock off gear, fags and drugs then respectable people would let their children use them. How many schools has Rossi been moved on from by the heads because they were selling these things to kids?

Hastelows is still going but uses his first name now :)

Reply Posted by P on Wednesday August 14 2013 at 20:24
Well said. Ice cream. Lol

Reply Posted by nic on Monday August 12 2013 at 10:51
shops have taken over as icecream vans turned really expensive, shops sell box's for less.
I went to kirkbalk school at hoyland and left quite a while ago, I was there 5 years and can remember buying cigs for 20p off atleast 3 different icecream vans :/ .

Reply Posted by flapper on Monday August 19 2013 at 10:55
selling shite icecream on wheels

Reply Posted by Marlowe on Tuesday April 28 2015 at 08:32
Making money out of ruining the peace in quiet neighborhoods. Overpriced and unhygienic. They deserve to be banned from the streets.

Reply Posted by Mr allen on Tuesday August 25 2015 at 19:00
Mr whippy aka hastelows who deliivers round silkstone needs to get off his feckijg mobile whilst driving...nearly caused an accident yet again..and just carries on driving ...

Reply Posted by Darron on Wednesday December 9 2015 at 22:46
My great grandfather set up Danny Oates Ice Cream back in 1886.
We lost the factory in the early 90's due to what Brian says Supermarkets.
We were selling 'Danny Specials' for 45p but you could buy a litre of ice cream for a quid at superstores.

Reply Posted by Polly Gorman-Jones on Friday May 20 2016 at 18:09
There is a ROssis ice cream van that comes down our street between 6pm - 6.2pm (variable) and stops for 1-2 MINUTES!!! NEVER have I had time to get up, pick up my awaiting at the ready purse, get to the door before hes driving back up the street. Ive only EVER been able to catch him once and that was when i was actually leaving a neighbours house on the same street and he was just setting off ... Its as if hes been told to visit the street (is he tagged or summat??) but cant be arsed serving anybody!

Reply Posted by Daniel on Monday November 14 2016 at 19:17
OK so pats ices have been visiting grimethorpe upto 5 times a day and I'm talking until the times of 8 pm on a weeknight like seriously it's November and there's not a Soul visiting them yet they play their music which sets the dogs off down the street. I understand if it's summer and people need it but not at this time of year.