Saturday, 27 November 2010

Disappearing species?

Wow, look at this amazing rarity

yes, I hear you say, it's a greengrocer's shop. Whoopee do.  So what? Well, this is Bramley's - it's the only greengrocer's shop in Cirencester and it's new. The last small greengrocer closed some years ago, leaving the almost the entire fruit and veg market to the supermarkets. There is a farmers market of course, for local seasonal produce but that's not there every day, and fine as it is, it's some way from any parking area, so people tend not to buy large amounts of heavy stuff, like potatoes and oranges.

It may seem amazing to people like my daughter say, who, living in London is surrounded by fine shops selling all kinds of British. European and Asian greengrocery, but in many English towns small shops have, one by one, fallen victim to the overwhelming buying power of supermarkets and closed down. They tend, by the way,  to reopen as coffee shops, I had a quick count up and there are at least eleven cafes and coffee shops in Cirencester at the moment. At least most of them are independents though, and some of them are really good, but I can't help wondering how much coffee people can drink?

Anyway it does seem like perhaps the tide is turning, we now have a fishmonger in the town, and I also noticed a new butcher's shop has opened too, maybe people are at last getting tired of one stop shopping, and some variety will be returning to our town centres at last. And one of the best things about this shop is that it's in the middle of the Brewery car park, so you can buy your potatoes, oranges, swedes and other heavy items and put them straight in the car, without giving yourself a hernia. So hopefully people will use it. I was in a hurry when I snapped this pic on my phone, so didn't have time to go in, but it all looked good and I will certainly be giving it a try very soon.

I'm sorry if this seems unneccesary jubilation over a simple greengrocer's shop, especially coming from someone who bangs on about home grown fruit and veg, but I can't grow lemons say, and the salad's a bit thin on the ground in November, so it's great for those things, but most of all it's a resurrection of some kind of choice and variety in the high street that I'm so pleased to see. Well done Bramleys and good luck!


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