A Landmark on the move

POULSBO — As trivia buffs may know, the San Francisco cable cars are the only moving National Historic Landmarks in the country.

But one Little Norway landmark changed all that, at least during this past week.

Front Street's The Landmark, a collectible gifts and British food goods shop, was on the move.

Its inventory was trucked from the heart of the city's core to Poulsbo Place II as the store left its post in historic downtown for the first time in nearly 15 years.

Box by box, owners Doug and Shirley Hawley have transferred their goods to their new Jensen Way storefront, and they're hoping both regular shoppers and seasonal tourist buyers follow.

Citing increased taxes and heightened rent, the Hawleys are ready for a fresh start for their locally beloved business.

The old location, next to the highly photographed "Velkommen til Poulsbo" mural, was a place Shirley said bustled with tourists, but also came with a historical stigma, as it is the former home of Iverson Monuments.

And in a world where Realtors swear by the mantra, "Location, location, location," Doug said it simply didn't work that way for The Landmark.

"The location didn't fill our pockets," he said, adding of their new locale, "We'll be known as our own store for the first time."

It's a bittersweet move, however, as being a destination Front Street institution has its charm.

"I'm going to miss this place," Shirley said. "We have a lot of regular customers. There's a lot of people who are kind of upset that we're moving. They've been coming in here since they were babies."

Shirley said she has many fond memories of being a Front Street business owner, though there have been a few bumps in the road. A wayward truck, a little vandalism and a leaky roof have kept she and Doug on their toes.

"It was just streaming in here like the Titanic was sinking," she said of a Thanksgiving 2007 pipe leak mishap.

Shirley said she's looking forward to being a Poulsbo Place II tenant, with new facilities to store the shop's teapots, English bone china, Boyd's Bears, Fenton Art Glass and various other items. The British Pantry, a favorite of many, will remain intact, boasting all sorts of the Queen's favorites from teas and biscuits to various types of sweets.

Doug said he expects the move to be complete in February; they'll officially take over their new storefront Feb. 1.

And as things settle, Shirley said she and Doug are just looking forward to continuing to serve a community that has supported them for more than a decade.

"We're just a grandma and grandpa trying to do a little business," she said.

Where to find The Landmark:

19345 Jensen Way

(360) 779-2900

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