INTERNATIONAL traveller and shop owner Jessica Schomberg has more than a bit of history linking her to Colchester.

Born and bred in the town, she may spend most of the year in the orient but this is where her home and family are.

These images from the archives show how clothes and retail are in her blood - not least because she is the third generation of Schombergs to have a shop in St John's Street.

"Previously we had a few different shops here including Mark the Tailor, Mr Stan and Pam Schomberg Gallery, which my mum ran."

It is now home to the JeS pop up shop which Jess opens twice a year, during the summer, and again throughout December before heading off back to India where she oversees the creation of her designs using the best materials and craftsmen and women.

She explains her Buba Rosie was born in Poland in 1910 and came to the UK as a young child.

"Her family were hat makers and all were involved in the rag trade as was her husband my Saida, or grandfather.

"They owned three shops on St John's Street including my one.

"Their shop was called Mark's The Tailor and it is still remembered now in the town and people still have my Grandfather's suits.

"Buba Rosie helped to bring me up and was a very strong influence on me.

"She was a master Bridge player and didn't suffer fools.

"Even the other day I saw their shop mentioned on Facebook and people reminiscing about it and how hard it was to leave without buying something."

Jess says Rosie taught her strong work ethics, how to measure things and how to value material.

"I have some of her beautiful jewellery pieces and love to wear a piece every day, so that I can feel her near me and for luck.

"When the shop is busy I can feel her proud presence and hear her saying 'that's my girl'.

"I found this picture in the shop cellar yesterday whilst clearing it out.

"She's wearing one of her favourite furs.

The family also had a shop in Crouch Street before moving to St John's Street.

"My great Aunt had a jumper stall every Saturday on the High Street here too.

"At that time everyone went to the market so it was very busy.

"I often went with my Buba and she’d usually manage to wangle a free sweater from her adored sister Millie. "My Bubas most repeated saying after she retired was 'who's in the shop ?' or 'how much did you take today?'"

At Christmas the pop up shop specialises in hand made jewellery and scarves and in the summer a dress shop.

* Does anyone have memories or photographs of old shops or restaurants in the town ? Do you remember Mark the Tailors or Stan's ? Please contact us on 01206 508186.