So just over a year since we closed due to Lockdown 1 the shop is about to reopen. It has been a challenging year but, like may other businesses, it has forced us to change the way we do some things for the better. If you come to the shop now you’ll find it a very different place. The cafe has gone, the restrictions on food and drink sakes make it unviable for now. This means we have space for even more books, we are a bookshop after all. We have taken the chance to update our administration systems. And then there’s bookshop.org that has provided us with an attractive online presence for customers.
The main thing the last year has shown is just how vital reading is. It hasn’t happened in the UK but in other countries bookshops have been granted essential service status. In times of crisis people turn to activities that provide comfort and escape. Reading does this. Access to books is vital; as we’ve all spent more time staring at screens the physical book has been even more important.
The other great lesson has been the importance of local shops. With restrictions on travel towns need local stores to serve local communities. People have turned to their local shops in part to support them but also because of the desire to have the physical shopping experience. Let’s hope this continues. A shop is for life not just for Covid.