Looking Back

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This building has been known over the years as the Benoit Block as the first floor tenant on the left was the A.H. Benoit Clothing Store. When this photo was taken in the 1970s, the upper floor was occupied by Attorney Robert L Cram and the Law Offices of Welch & Welch (Grover & Roger). The first floor on the right side of the building was occupied by Nutters Department Store. Benoit and Nutters went out of business and the upstairs tenants have also changed over the years. Current Publishing offices were located here for a number of years. To see more historical photos and artifacts, visit the Westbrook Historical Society at the Fred C. Wescott Building, 426 Bridge St. It is open Tuesdays and Saturdays, 9 a.m.-noon, and the first Wednesday of each month at 1:30 p.m., September-June. Inquiries can be emailed to westhistorical@myfairpoint.net. The website is www.westbrookhistoricalsociety.org

Feb. 12, 1992

Richard Willoughby, 28, a lifelong Westbrook resident whose parents were among the first volunteers of the Westbrook Rescue Unit, remained in Maine Medical Center this week, after being stabbed in the back of his neck, just below the left ear, by a customer he was evicting from his downtown restaurant and bar, The Bus Stop, last week. Stephen Hay is in County Jail, charged with attempted murder, two counts of aggravated assault and tampering with a witness. At the request of Willoughby’s family, the hospital has released no information about his condition.

The Gorham Town Council voted Feb. 4 to ask voters a second time whether to allow sewer users in the town to pay for the replacement of the Gorham Bank Development sewer system. The measure was defeated last November in a referendum. The council also will ask voters to authorize spending more money: $205,750 this time as opposed to $161,400 three months ago. The difference? The Portland Water District did not include the cost of replacing the Gray Road line included in the bank development system with the estimate supplied to the town last fall.

Plans for a billiard hall over C&R Tile, 1 Chabot St., Westbrook, are before the Planning Board. Lou Ann Murray of Sebago Lake and Karina Thomas of Windham, as the Par Group, expect to lease the 15,000-square-foot second floor and use it for 16 pool tables, five video games and a sandwich bar. They want to add a sports lounge and banquet functions center next year.

The ever-popular pianist Danny Patt will entertain at the meeting of the Westbrook Senior Citizens to be held Feb. 17 at the Westbrook-Warren Congregational Church. Lorraine Poitras and Muriel Peisel are on the Refreshment Committee. Adelbert and Jeanette Greene will be the greeters.

Wes and Fran Evans of Gorham recently returned from Honduras and Pakistan as volunteers for the International Executive Service Corp., an organization that offers retired executives a chance to share their skills with developing countries.

The Westbrook cable television channel, Channel 38, will show the Maine Field Marching Band Championship competition at 7 p.m. Feb. 13. The Westbrook Marching Band is the official state marching band this year.

Feb. 13, 2002

A Superior Court justice dismissed a lawsuit by neighbors of the proposed new Westbrook Hannaford supermarket Thursday. The suit challenged the City Council’s grant of a new conditional zone that would permit the development at the formerly industrial-zoned property, the one-time Southern Container box plant.

Casella Waste Systems will hold a pre-bid conference tomorrow with a selected list of contractors bidding to build its coming trash transfer station and offices on the County Road in Westbrook. It closed in escrow a week ago on the purchase of land on the road from the Parker family and will soon be buying an adjoining back parcel from the heirs of the late Nathan Chapman, said Scott Hagenmeyer of Casella. He said he expects construction to start with warmer weather.

An uncrossable center median strip down a rebuilt William Clarke Drive in Westbrook would stop cars from Portland from turning left onto Church or Central streets, and would stop cars leaving Church, Central or Brackett from making left turns toward Gorham. These were among the details that drew attention when the public got its first look at a map of how the road may be rebuilt, at a roundtable discussion session Saturday.

Since the original Don’s Lunch, operated by Don and Yvette Richards closed at Christmas 2000, Westbrook fans of nighttime lunch cart dining have mostly gone hungry. A truck operated by Terry Dudevior, Old Orchard Beach, opened around the start of this year at the former Don’s Lunch location at the Muffler Shop, 959 Main St., but it left town after just a few weeks. Now, Bill and Nancy Bombard, longtime Westbrook residents who bought the former Don’s truck in August, have applied for a license to run the truck under the Don’s Lunch name, though at a different location. They’ll run the business at the former used car lot between Aubuchon Hardware and the railroad tracks at Cumberland Street. They plan a nearly identical operation to the original Don’s Lunch.

The building that once housed Gorham Grange, at 19 State St., has been there more than 100 years. The building was home for about 30 years to the Gorham Flea Market, which closed at the end of December. Now, its upstairs tenant, Centre of Movement School of Performing Arts, will occupy the street floor as well. The building’s owners, Frank Wilbur of Hollis and Walter Libby of Gorham, operated the flea market since the early 1970s. Victoria Lloyd, owner of the dance school, will be renting with “hopes to buy.”

Duane and Pam (Ayers) Damon, School Street, Gorham, enjoyed having their college children home at Christmas. Alan is a sophomore at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, N.Y., majoring in computer sciences. Kelly is a freshman at Emory University, Atlanta. A third child, Elizabeth, is a freshman honor student at Gorham High School.

This building has been known over the years as the Benoit Block as the first floor tenant on the left was the A.H. Benoit Clothing Store. When this photo was taken in the 1970s, the upper floor was occupied by Attorney Robert L Cram and the Law Offices of Welch & Welch (Grover & Roger). The first floor on the right side of the building was occupied by Nutters Department Store.

Benoit and Nutters went out of business and the upstairs tenants have also changed over the years. Current Publishing offices were located here for a number of years. To see more historical photos and artifacts, visit the Westbrook Historical Society at the Fred C. Wescott Building, 426 Bridge St. It is open Tuesdays and Saturdays, 9 a.m.-noon, and the first Wednesday of each month at 1:30 p.m., September-June. Inquiries can be emailed to westhistorical@myfairpoint.net. The website is www.westbrookhistoricalsociety.org