Updated: Mar 23, 2019
In 1970, a young man named Peter Wright took a bold leap of faith when he resigned from his job as a clerk at a shipping company to pursue his dream of shaping surfboards with a guy known as ‘Chemical’ Clive Barber. But Clive went out of business before Peter could even begin, forcing Peter to start his own surfboard enterprise in his parents’ garage in Kommetjie.
A year later he rented a space near the beach in Muizenberg to peddle his boards and other surf related products, and the legendary Corner Surf Shop was born. But it wasn’t exactly smooth runnings from there…
The ratepayers association of Muizenberg claimed they were concerned bathers would be hit by surfboards in what is now known as Surfer’s Corner and, in 1970, banned surfing from 6am to 6pm. The real reason, however, was that surfers were considered to be a “bad element” and the ratepayers association didn’t want the long-haired hippy riff-raff in their hood.
The ban was eventually overturned in 1972 thanks to local surfer John Wiley, who pulled together a group of surfers and held a protest down at the beach. Soon the Corner became a designated wave-riding spot and Peter’s business began to boom.
But Peter has stayed true to the shop’s roots. When you enter Corner Surf Shop, be prepared to step back into the Endless Summer of 1966. From the John Whitmore board collection to the latest in island style clothing, classic boards, wetsuits and full range of skater and surfing gear, The Corner Surf Shop is an icon of surf culture. A place where you feel the vibe that makes Muizenberg the heart of surfing in South Africa.
Described by Zig Zag as “the friendly white-haired godfather of Cape Town surf retail”, Peter, along with long-time ‘right-hand woman’ Tessa Moore, are local legends and proud supporters of Village Vibes 2019. So the next time you’re in the ‘Berg, drop in to Corner Surf Shop and say hi.