'I really have loved my time in the magic industry' - shop owner brings down the curtain on 70-year career
PUBLISHED: 12:08 13 June 2019 | UPDATED: 12:08 13 June 2019
Whether it was entertaining an audience with his puppetry or wowing customers with his card tricks, Mike Wallis has been embracing the wonders of magic for more than 70 years.
Now 81 years old and only capable of working a couple of hours a day in his magic shop, he has decided to bring down the curtain on a long and successful career.
Wallis's Wonders based in Victoria Arcade, Great Yarmouth, will close in September as Mr Wallis retires.
"I really have loved my time in the magic industry. Whether it has been performing on stage or working in the shop it has been a lot of fun," he said.
"People like to be fooled and that's what magicians do.
"Unfortunately my health isn't a good as it once was so the time is right to stop working."
The 81-year-old moved into the arcade in 2016 along with several other business following a devastating fire which destroyed his and many other shops in Regent Road.
Despite losing £65,000 due to the damage caused to his shop and stock, Mr Wallis was able to rebuild his business thanks to his reputation.
He said: "Whether it was touring magicians or holidaymakers, people knew this shop was the place to get their magic tricks from.
"I know many businesses have struggled in the arcade but my reputation has seen me through."
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It was Mr Wallis' performing days which saw him settle in Great Yarmouth in the 1980's having grown up in Lancashire.
Here he wowed audiences with his array of tricks at venues including the Marina Centre and Gorleston Pavilion.
Having enjoyed a successful performing career the 81-year-old opened his magic shop in 2014 selling some of his favourite tricks.
Mr Wallis believes the magic industry remains as popular as ever.
"You only have to look at the most recent Britain's Got Talent to see how well the industry is doing.
"I think people will always enjoy being tricked."
Mr Wallis said he is looking forward to having more time to relax and hopes to go travelling with countries including Japan and Russia on his wish list.
He is currently open to offers for his shop.
All enquiries should be made at Wallis's Wonders.