Muriel Craddock, a well-respected character in the CBD’s small business community, passed away in December at the age of 105.
In 1965, after an impulsive purchase of hundreds of second-hand books from an auction, Muriel started the Essendon Treasure Chest with her husband Leslie and daughter Kay selling second-hand books, old furniture, bric-a-brac and self-made handicrafts.
Muriel and Kay later turned the “treasure chest” into the Kay Craddock Antiquarian Bookstore and relocated to Bourke St in the 1990s and then to its current location at the Assembly Hall Building at 156 Collins St.
The local gem sells antique and modern books from the 14th to 21st centuries and has been ranked one of the world’s most beautiful bookshops.
Muriel received gold in the Lord Mayor’s Commendations program in 2006 for her contribution to the CBD’s small business scene.
Last year Kay was also recognised with a Lord Mayor’s Commendation for 50 years of being an important part of Melbourne’s fabric.
Muriel remained a business partner in the bookshop well into her late nineties and retired due to advanced macular degeneration.
She passed away peacefully on December 6, 2017 and was remembered as “a beloved wife, dearly loved mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, a good friend to those who knew her, and an intrepid business woman”.