Once you’ve struggled up Steep Hill in Lincoln – named that for a reason – and taken a few more steps, you’ll come to the beautiful Bailgate area located close to the cathedral.
Here you’ll find Lindum Books, a lovely little independent bookshop owned by Sasha Drennan. The shop, which has been here since 2014, stands out. It’s painted an attractive mint green colour and always boasts some wonderful window displays.
Currently in their window, you’ll see signs for their event this Friday for the talk from author Jane Robinson, about her new book ‘Ladies Can’t Climb Ladders’.
With high streets across the UK struggling and many shops being forced to close, it may come as a surprise that independent bookshops are on the rise.
According to the Booksellers Association (BA), after 20 years of decline in numbers, independent bookshops have increased for 2 years running, with 15 shops opening in 2018 alone.
Sasha says that running an independent bookshop is hard work but very rewarding, and that they are important for a number of reasons.
“We provide a unique, enriched shopping and cultural experience, not just a soulless online transaction; and we provide opportunities to connect with others, in person, for our customers, our staff and our visiting authors – so important when so many of us only connect online yet say we are still lonely.”
Unfortunately, independent bookshops do still struggle, with there being downsides that they must work against. Sasha says how their rent and business rates are very high compared to their turnover and that they don’t receive as big a discount from wholesalers when purchasing books.
However, supporting your local independent bookshop generates income into the economy and provides people with employment opportunities. Bookshops can become a hub to give back to the communities that they’re a part of.
Sasha says that at Lindum Books they get to know their regular customers personally so can give advice on what books they might like. This is something that you wouldn’t experience in a chain bookstore.
With so much on offer it isn’t surprising more people are choosing independent bookshops. It seems that perhaps they’re on the rise because more people are seeking human interaction when purchasing their books. Having someone there to ask questions and speak to about new releases is a change of pace from online shopping – and there’s nothing quite like the smell of a bookshop!