I certainly have a couple of favourites in Bury St Edmunds and St. John’s Street is vying for first position.
This street is a rare example of a place where you feel you have gone back in time, but is also bang up to date tackling present day issues.
Back in time to shop
For example, there is Bury Sewing and Knitting where they always have a great solution for whatever random reason you go in there for, for example the exact right shade of thread to mend that hole in your cardigan. It is great for make do and mend.
Another independent shop is Aubyn Davies which has great fashion for men and school uniforms – interesting mix?
Then, there’s Clear to Sea which is all about zero waste, plastic free, eco shopping with refill and reuse which is helping to solve a very modern day problem. If you think about it, their mission also fits the ‘back in time’ brief as it harks back to the plastic-free- returning-glass-bottles era.
A delightful shopping experience
There are also a few charity shops but with a difference. I love the fact that the St Nicholas Hospice Care shop describes itself as a boutique. It has fashion rails helpfully organised by size and second-hand home wares making it a delightful browsing experience.
The Handmade Shop and Gallery is a tiny shop packed with local artisan arts and craft including some excellent greetings cards. Being a creative myself, I find it inspirational.
Far Away Foods has ethnic foods and exotic fruit and veg as well as free-from foods. There is always something I’ve not come across before.
Pro-Cook is full of temptation for a foodie cook like me and a place where you might treat yourself every now and then.
And finally, a special mention to No. 8 St John’s Street: The Shop. Love the simplicity in this name – the window display tempts you in to browse or shop.
Time for a Cafe
Of course, all that shopping leaves you needing a coffee and Midgar Coffee is my café of choice when I’m in St John’s Street. Friendly staff and a chilled-out atmosphere with a big picture window, perfect for gazing out.
St John's Street features in my latest novel, The Artist, the Farmer and the Ancient Oak
After all, your hero needs a coffee now and then! And in one of the charity shops Wanda finds a copy of the amazing book: Silent Spring by Rachel Carson.
The whole experience of being in St John's Street is life-affirming and leaves you mellow.
I realise that I am very lucky to live in this beautiful town.
Do you have a favourite street in your nearest town? Let me know in the comment box below. Where is it and why do you love it? I may even come to visit one day.