Monday, November 19, 2012

You're Going to do What????

We opened the Big Green Bookshop in March 2008. It is the greatest bookshop in the whole world (well we think so anyway).

We've had some ups and downs over the last couple of years, but because we have the most incredible customers and friends, we 've managed to get through the hard times.
We've always been a community led shop, and we've tried to be more than just a place where you just come to buy books. With author events, school visits, comedy nights, storytelling, writing, knitting and boardgames groups as well as all the other stuff we do, we hope that there's something that appeals to you. We will continue to do this, because we absolutely love doing it and we believe this is the way that our bookshop should run.

Never ones to tread water, we're always looking for new and exciting things that we can do to share the Big Green Bookshop love. One thing we are hoping to finalise this week, for example, is to get the go ahead to put on a huge literary festival in Wood Green next year. This is something we've wanted to do since we opened, but have never been able to afford. We still can't afford it, but are hoping that we'll be getting some funding...(fingers crossed).

The other thing we've always wanted to do is to open another bookshop. So, just because we can't afford to do this either, we're going to do this too!
A lease became available in a small commercial property near to where Simon now lives in Brookmans Park.
It's a barber's shop at the moment, and it looks something like this.
Hello barber's shop.
It's a very different area from Wood Green, but it's crying out for a bookshop. We have managed to negotiate a 'subject to contract' agreement with the owner, with a view to take on the lease on January 1st 2013. But, with a bit of luck and trickery, we'll hopefully be getting the keys on December 1st (13 days time)
 We're then going to try and turn it into a bookshop in another 13 days time, and open on Saturday December 14th.
 It's going to be a children's bookshop, with a sideline in toys, and Tim and Simon are going to split their time between the two shops. Katie will also be taking on a more permanent role in the Bookshop in Brookmans Park and we'll be taking on one (possibly two) part time members of staff at Wood Green. It will share the same community philosophy as the Wood Green shop and we'll try to offer the residents of Brookmans Park a bookshop they can call their own.

Yes, it's totally crazy, but we are really fired up about this new opportunity.
'Open another Bookshop, What Could Possibly Go Wrong?'


Cornflower said...

Tremendous! The best of luck to you.

wowser said...

You should keep the barber's chairs for people to read in.eau

Hippyjon said...

You're both mental. That is why it will work.

longcat said...

i move south.. and you decide to open a new shop even further north?


but weirdly it's not all about me, so well done, i look forward to a fleet of big green, friendly, community bookshops across london, then england... then europe... then space...


Tim said...

If you look closely at your reflections in the shop window you are actually hugging - two beautiful moments in one post! Good luck with v2.0 (as if you need it)

Simon Key said...

Thanks everyone.
Karen, we've ordered lots of luck from the suppliers. Let's hope they deliver it.
Ed, we're keeping the chairs.
Jon, we're relying on this logic too.
Robbie, it is a bit about you. you be careful with that leg btw.
Tim, I hadn't spotted that before. How lovely.
It's all a bit scary, but if we don't think about the scariness of it, it isn't scary at all.
I'll try and keep everyone updated on this blog about what's going on. x

Andrew Blackman said...

Congratulations!! Don't know where Brookmans Park is, but I'm sure you'll do well. Good luck!

racheinderbys said...

You had my hopes up there, especially when someone mentioned north. But it turns out Brookmans Park is in Hertfordshire.

Debbie said...

Good luck, guys! Anything that makes children enjoy reading gets our vote!

If you'd like us to send you a free supply of kids' bookmarks to give away in your shop, just contact us via our website -

The bookmarks promote Readathon, the national charity that runs sponsored reading schemes in schools all over the UK. The sponsorship money goes to help seriously ill children - which motivates the children to read even more!

Best of luck with your new shop, anyway!

Alex in Leeds said...

Oh how fabulous! Good luck getting the shop ready for the December launch. :)

Simon Key said...

Thanks Andrew, it's about 12 miles up the road from Holloway.
Rachel, sorry it's not further north.
Debbie, that would be great. If you want you can send them to the Wood Green shop. Thanks.
Alex, thanks a lot. We're aware it might be a bit ambitious, but we're going to try.

Jane McLoughlin said...

So inspiring...good luck with with new children's shop. Our communities need more more like you!

Candy Gourlay said...

Yes totally crazy but you guys have shown that insanity is the way to go! Bookshops at the heart of our communities means books at the heart of our culture!

Malaika said...

Wood Green, Brookmans Park today; tomorrow the world! Good luck with the new venture...

Anonymous said...

Excellent news! The world needs more indepenent children's bookshops. Wishing you the very best of luck.

Jim & Natasha @ Chicken and Frog Bookshop

Anonymous said...

Whoops, looks like I can't spell independent :(