Saturday, 20 March 2010

beware of the leopard


We like St Nicholas Market in Bristol. It's a pretty bustling place, with stalls selling tools, bike stuff, pet stuff, craft stuff, eco stuff, toys, fossils, clothes both old, new, kinky, hippy, gothy and Brizzly. And loads of places you can eat well and cheaply; Indian, Italian, Jamaican, Portuguese, Moroccan, and even English in a good way, thanks to PieMinister and a couple of greasy spoons. Though our favourite is Lello's Pure Pasta, where we get big plates of meatballs and pasta.

Anyway, I was down there yesterday and talked with David Jackson at Beware Of The Leopard Books. Indy bookshops are an endangered species in Bristol and elsewhere; even the big shops are closing down; we recently lost Borders, and Blackwells' Park Street shop is shrinking massively so that a Jamie Oliver restaurant can open in the upstairs bit.

Apparently the council want the stallholders at the market to keep the front of their shops clear of stuff, to make it 'as welcoming and as attractive as possible' . Which is odd, because I thought it was welcoming and attractive, even if it isn't like Bristol's 'prestigious' Cabot Circus (or Carboot Circus, as it is known locally). The trouble is, some people (like me for instance) go to the market because it isn't like Cabot Circus. It would be a shame if the place got tidied up. There's a petition asking them to think again. Here it is.