Just tucked away on Colson Street is the Bristol based independent book shop, Bloom and Curll. It is, of course, temporarily closed for the month long lockdown in England, the metal shutters half pulled down over the windows. But you can still glimpse the stacks and stacks of second hand and new books stuffed on the shelves inside.
Established by Jason Beech, the bookshop has quickly become a well known independent gem of the town centre. For the first few years the shop struggled to get off the ground, resulting in Jason having to live in the shop and sleep in the back. But his dedication has clearly paid off. Whenever I have visited the shop, there has been a small queue outside the pea green room of people waiting to have a rummage in the little shop.
He describes creating the name of the shop in a short film in collaboration with Watershed as a metaphor. Entering the shop is a denial of the world, a curling inwards, but once you’re inside and at peace, you may bloom back out again and express your truest self. He also notes that the shop began with the love of literature but has grown since then. He describes the sheer love and romanticism of the book as an object and what it can represent.
The bookshop stocks an immense variety of books. Fiction, non-fiction, children books and unique rare finds. Jason has previously worked as a dressmaker but has since adapted these skills to work on bookbinding which he works on at the back of the shop.
Although the shop remains closed, Bloom and Curll are open from Click and Collect and postal orders. I contacted them via Instagram and collected my purchase, Giovanni’s Room by James Baldwin the next day. If you’re keen to support local Bristol businesses during this second lockdown, this is a great way to get involved. They’re taking orders via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and their website. You can browse their stock online and direct message them with any enquiries.
This article is part of themed content week collaborating with local businesses to promote shopping small and local during lockdown and beyond.