GEORGE BUSINESS NEWS - The bustling Harry Mann Square at 112 York Street, in the heart of the George CBD, was once a residential property with a doctor's surgery, owned by Dr Herman Bernard Mann. His legacy is honoured in the name of the centre.
Born in 1899 in Ladismith, Cape Province, Mann was the only pupil in the matric class there. According to George Museum historian and researcher Lynne Thompson, Mann started his studies in medicine at the University of Cape Town and finished in London.
He returned to George and in 1926 started a practice in the house of the Fisher family, where he boarded. This home stood where Harry Mann Square is today. Dr Mann later purchased the property for his home and surgery. He married Pearly Joseph from Oudtshoorn and they had two children, Erica and Joel. Dr Mann passed away in 1992.
Two pillars where Dr Mann's entrance gate used to be, have been preserved and can still be seen on the pavement in York Street in front of the centre.
Local businessmen Sal Marsilio, Dave Weldon and Nico Joubert built the building in 1996.
The late Neels van Aswegen acquired the building years later and in February 2010 sold to Carl Swart, the current owner. A varied tenant mix adds to the success of the centre.
There is ample parking space with 80 parking bays at the back of the building and another parking area fronting York Street.
A bus stop is located almost on the centre's doorstep, in front of St Mark's Cathedral.
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