Coffee at a café in Chippenham, England

Nov 24th, 2011 | By | Category: Culture, Economics, News

The girl who reads is here.


The man who recommends something to everyone and usually, but not this morn, wears a jogging outfit is here.


Shops, the economy and Chipenham

Chipenham - coffee, shopping and the economy

The rather sour-faced server, who is when she summons it up jollier than that, is here.


Through the window I see the shops that are struggling, strung out along the high street.

What does a struggling shop look like?

It does not look like anything!

Nothing you can see.

It’s the name of the shop, it’s the chain, the brand or the category.

Clothing chain – struggling (with some dynamic exceptions); bookshop – struggling; cheap outdoors outfitters – struggling but perhaps some are buying to equip themselves for a cheaper vacation; Bank – making all the mistakes yet still selling itself as if it were a dream come true to customers…struggling; mobile phone shop – always empty save for 30 minute long per-sale interactions – struggling (if it weren’t for the fact that the “shop” is merely a portal to a service an amorphous, generic conduit and has no “stickiness” as a brand. Branding time, “minutes”, airwaves is a challenge!)


So what is missing from this mix?


What can we find to excite it, light it up with new, financially nutritious, genuine, bubbling, buoyant stuff?

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