Leaning on the black and white barber's chair taking pride of place in his small shop, Alf Longano ponders his career choices. "I probably should have taken up psychology and given free haircuts," Mr Longano said. "Instead I charged $25 for haircuts with free counseling on the side." He started barbering 35 years ago, spending school holidays sweeping hair at Longano's Hairdressing, the shop his father opened at Bendigo's Fountain Plaza in the sixties. Since then, Mr Longano said bloodlines of Bendigo families had been loyal to his shop, sitting in the barber's chair surrounded by framed photos of the Italian national football team. "We have made relationships with people from three generations; grandfather, son, their sons, and now little grandchildren," he said. "It has been a ride." The family line of haircuts came to a stop on November 30, Mr Longano closing up shop, now Alf's Barber Shop at Strath Village, for the last time. "[The closure] has not quite hit me yet, but it is time," Mr Longano said. His father Tony migrated to Australia by boat from Riccia, a small commune in the south-of-Italy, opening Continental Hairdressing store at Fountain Plaza with his brother Fred in 1966. Eventually his brother Fred would leave to open Bendigo Pizza and Longano's Hairdressing was born. Tony cut hair at the Fountain Plaza store until he suffered a stroke around 20 years ago. In 2008 Mr Longano moved the family business to Bath Lane before it took its final form at Strath Village around six years ago. In the more than three decades he had been barbering, Mr Longano had cut hair belonging to all works of life, "from a to z". Somewhere in that alphabet included a "well, just very English" client sitting in the chair during a 1983 royal visit to the city. "It was Princess Diana's brother-in-law," Mr Longano said. Michael Lowther was one customer who had followed the Longanos from shop to shop for more than 50-years. "I love the service and the chats, and you get a good haircut," Mr Lowther said. "I have always been looked after by the Longanos." He was the final hair cut Mr Longano gave before he closed up shop this week. The barber shop providing space for "chats" and for men to share stories was something Mr Longano said was special. The barber's chair sometimes felt like a confession box, he said. "You can hear the stories, but you can not actually tell people, [the client] trusts you," he said. Mr Longano said the confession box relationship benefited the person holding the scissors too. "You think you're having a bad day, and someone comes in and tells you a story and you think, actually, I'm having a good day," he said. Mr Longano said he would spend the next few months working on his health, which had been a contributing factor to the closure. A beauty salon would move in at the Strath Village space on Monday, November 6.