Before the advent of the motor car the business of travel largely centred on the horse. Whether one sat on the saddle or rode in a cart or carriage, horse-power was the order of the day.
Just as we require garages to supply our cars with fuel and to repair them when they go wrong, so our ancestors needed a handy blacksmith or farrier to tend to their horses when the need arose.
Horse travel being much less prevalent today we have seen the demise of many of the Farriers and Smiths which were once such a common sight.
The same applies to many other trades which were once common but for which progress has made them unnecessary. For instance not so long ago, no-one would think of leaving home without putting on a hat but now hat shops are a rarity since most people when out and about are happily hatless.
We may look back on these establishments with nostalgia but time marches on. Farriers became Texaco garages and hat shops and furriers became Primark.
The closing of many familiar high street shops such as Woolworths, Jessops, Blockbuster and the like are merely part of the same process and should not be mourned.
In time to come, no doubt we shall have local rocket refuelling bays, bionic limb clinics and food pellet dispensers to look forward to.