IT has been described as an ‘Aladdin’s Cave’ for DIY and pet supplies.

And if you wanted a thingummyjig for that job at home, it was the place to find it.

But Martyn and Linda Sykes, who have run Honley Pet and Hardware Shop for 28 years, have now sold up and are preparing to retire to France.

Martyn, a former engineer, and Linda, a former dental nurse, took over the unoccupied basement, on Westgate, in 1984.

The married couple started a woodwork business but as other businesses on Westgate closed down, Martyn and Linda decided to fill in the voids.

Despite the shortage of floor space in the two small subterranean rooms, the couple added a pet supplies section in 1988 and a hardware store in 1992.

The shop, which will be taken over by Holme Valley twins James and Edward Broadbent in 2013, is packed from floor to ceiling with everything a handyman or pet owner could reasonably want.

In just a few square metres there’s equipment for plumbing, lighting, painting, gardening and looking after your pets.

Linda, 54, said: “People used to say that if we didn’t have something, it wasn’t worth having!”

Despite the dominance of the DIY market by chain superstores, the little shop on Westgate has held firm.

The couple say it’s because they offered a level of customer service and advice that B&Q et al couldn’t.

And, despite the shop being crammed to the rafters, Martyn and Linda knew where everything was kept.

Linda said: “We had three stock taking books. We knew where everything was on a good day.

“We’ve had a good relationship with our customers. We got cards, bottles of wine and flowers from them.

“Shops like this are becoming rarer. When people heard we were leaving they told us not to.”

Martyn and Linda, who have one grown-up daughter, last rang the till on December 29. The Broadbent brothers take over the store from January 3.

Mr Sykes, 58, said: “They came into the shop since they were boys and they expressed an interest in taking over a long time ago so we didn’t even need to put it on the market.”

And as Martyn and Linda plan their retirement in Brittany is there anything they won’t miss about the shop?

Martyn said: “We won’t miss lifting stuff from outside and bringing it in.”

But Mr Sykes added: “We never got tired of staring at the same walls”.