Community News

21 Years in Pilgrim’s Rest

Frieda Paton

This month the owners of the Old Print House are celebrating 21 years in town. They took over this popular, original “sweetie shop” on July 7, 1998.

The business is the only one that has been trading in the same product line – traditional and homemade sweets – continuously since Pilgrim’s Rest was taken over by the old Transvaal Provincial Administration and developed as a heritage site.

In 1973 Leonard Burt moved his pharmacy from what is now the Pilgrim’s and Sabie News printing museum to one of the rooms in the Old Print House in 1973. The front part of the premises became the sweet shop. A room in the building is still devoted to a display of antique pharmacy display cabinets, bottles and other memorabilia.

The Old Print House is still one of the original buildings in town.  It was originally owned by George Roy but from 1899 a local solicitor, Mr. CT Rabie, conducted his legal practice at these premises. Rabie was Chairman of the Pilgrim’s Rest War Council during the Anglo Boer War.

From 1914 the building was used as a doctor’s consulting rooms. It became a private residence around the 1930s and later it was turned into the general dealer store which was taken over by Burt.

Since they’ve arrived in town Mike and Sherry Goodwin have been active members of the business community devoted to keeping Pilgrim’s Rest alive. They rebuilt Mona Cottage, situated next to the Old Print House, which they run as a guest house. Sherry Goodwin owns Pilgrim’s Rest Tours and her passion for the history of the village adds rich colour as she guides visitors around its attractions.

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