Barbers who put the hair into Harehills hang up their scissors after 90 years between them
A barber in Harehills is hanging up his scissors for the final time next week after 54 years in the business.
John Kay, 69, started working at Bruno’s Men’s Salon aged just 15, after his dad opened the shop in 1964.
Generations of men have visited Bruno’s Men’s Salon since it opened, with loyal customers returning from as far as Amsterdam to get their hair cut.
Mr Kay said: “It’s going to be quite emotional closing after all these years. All our customers are regulars. We’ve even had grown men going out of here crying as they’ve said goodbye.”
The shop has never advertised its services and does not even have a phone number.
Mr Kay says the secret to the business’s success has been through word-of-mouth and his extensive training – which was much longer than modern hairdressing courses.
One regular, Mani Gill, 28, brought his two-year-old son, Harman, for his first hair cut as soon as he heard the shop was closing.
He said: “My dad brought me here when I was three years old. When I heard they were closing, I wanted to bring him in because it’s something I did with my dad.
“I’ve known them all my life. It’s so relaxed and friendly. No-one else can cut hair like here.”
Mr Kay retires alongside fellow barber, David Webster, 62, who started working in the shop 36 years ago.
The pair became best friends and have not had one argument in over three decades.
Mr Webster used to have a shop in Rothwell, but it was forced to close when he developed Legionnaires’ disease.
Shortly after coming out of hospital, Mr Kay approached him to work at Bruno’s.
Mr Webster said: “I never thought I’d stay this long. He’s my best mate. We’ll still see each other a lot – I’ve seen him more than my wife in the last 36 years!”
Tomorrow the pair will sweep the floors of Bruno’s Men’s Salon for the very last time.
They plan to spend retirement playing golf and tending to their allotments – and drinking the Champagne brought in by grateful customers.