Trading Tales August/September entries

Back from holiday? Can’t wait to see what new delights await in Bristol Independent shops this autumn? Read on…

By website:

Mike recommends Cyclelife in Stokes Croft:
I’ve been receiving sound advice and service from Cyclelife, a Stokes Croft landmark, since I came to Bristol in 1986. What I particularly like is knowing that I’m getting a good value for money service often with a little bit extra, sometimes with a bit of bike magic too. I also appreciate Tim’s friendly and expert advice. Once your bike has gone into the workshop, you know it will come out much improved. It is great to feel that you are a valued customer too. There is never any pressure and no attempt to get you to pay for something than is more expensive than what you actually need.

Last Saturday, I was in the shop sorting out some gear problems. While I was there, someone came in with a creaking bike. Tim instantly set to work with a large spanner and cured the problem. My bike was efficiently sorted and Tim also made some adjustments to the front break to solve an annoying rubbing against the rim, which he kindly didn’t charge me for. He re-jigged his work schedule so that I didn’t have to make a return visit from home. I happened to mention that I was selling our tandem and Tim contacted a customer who had earlier on expressed an interest in a tandem. A few hours later, the tandem was sold. That is what it is like to use this popular and everyday family orientated bike shop.

Roxy loves Treasure Island sweetshop:
Treasure Island sweetshop is a tiny family run business in St Nicholas market which captures the very essence of independent businesses. I’m only 17 and I work in the sweetshop as the Saturday girl, and being only 17 I didn’t grow up with the magical traditional sweetshops. but being in here and seeing the effect it has on some people is exceptional. Treasure Island sweetshop transports people back to there child hood and fills them full of memories that had slipped away from them. It brings happiness to people just by allowing them to reminisce. Treasure island sweetshop truly is a hidden gem giving many people happiness and even that little bit of hope.

Julie values the service at K’s alterations:


My favourite independent special shop is K’s alterations at 61 Broad Street BS1 2ET. My reason is very simple in that every time I buy an article of clothing it normally needs altering to fit me. Over the years I have had some really bad experiences and some disastrous outcomes due to careless work or bad attitude of the person altering my clothes. I am a professional and my age is 62, I travel the world with my work and need to look very smart while presenting to customers. I have just moved to Bristol and found K’s shop by accident. I have visited the shop around 5-6 times in the past few months and without question I have received an outstanding service where each time their customer service has been excellent, listening to my needs and concerns while assuring me it is no trouble. Then I usually get a call to say my alteration is ready sometimes before the due time. This shop really understands customer care and I wish I could do all my shopping there as it is always a pleasure to go. They listen, take care of my needs and invite me back, Perfect! I really believe its the people that make the difference in a business and not the location or size of the property!!!

Mo likes The Rainbow Cafe in Clifton Village
The Rainbow Cafe is a very special cafe in Waterloo Street, Clifton, Bristol. It is so much more than a cafe, offering welcome and friendship to all who eat there. It is run by the lovely Stella and Emily, mother and daughter. It also offers Yoga, music nights and knitting and nosh evenings and the food is good too!I don’t know what we would do without it!

Vanessa nominates Niche Frames, Stoke Croft, Bristol
I’ve chosen Niche Frames as one of my favourite independent businesses in Bristol as they offer a unique service. It is a very friendly and helpful family run picture framing business.

The shop sells a good variety of ready made frames but what is particularly appealing about the shop is its vast collection of frames across the shop walls to suit any genre and size of picture – be it a grand oil painting or poster. The staff give useful advice in helping customers decide which frame is the most suitable and they never rush their customers. An order can be placed for a bespoke frame and their prices are very reasonable too. There’s no need to go to big stores such as John Lewis – all can be found here.

In addition to picture frames, they also sell lots of lovely cards, posters and prints. I would recommend this shop to anyone who wants some framing done.

Cristina loves East Bristol Bakery on St Marks Road:
Fab enthusiastic, friendly, people, amazing bread and they wrap each loaf meticulously with in paper with beautiful folds that keep it in place.

Sally also recommends
East Bristol Bakery, St Marks Road, Easton

Just what Easton needs a small craft bakery making and selling wonderful bread – high quality traditional breads, seasonal specials, and tasty sweet treats that include Vegan, dairy free and wheat free offerings. They also sell freerange eggs, preserves, flour and yeast. Everything is made in their open plan bakery/shop!

I love their soughdough bread and make a special trip to buy it twice a week. The staff are warm and friendly and are really helpful – you can’t ask for more – they get my vote!

From the Twitter stream:

Nicole Beebee @Baronesscohen
@bristolindies #TradingTales favourite local independant has to be @CoxandBaloney Vintage clothing and Tea Rooms #creamtea #Bristol

Bristol Osteopathy @osteopathalison
@weddinghelperuk @Baronesscohen @bristolindies I’m going to join in the @CoxandBaloney love!! Surely the prettiest indie trader in Bristol?

Vanessa Clark @sweetiepiebs8 
@BristolCouncil @bristolindies can The Clifton Arcade have a shout out. Lots of independents & a lovely vibe make this a special place.

Wai Yee Hong @waiyeehong
@bristolindies I’d like to give a shout out to @BordeauxQuay where I enjoyed a wonderful lunch. #TradingTales

Redfield Living ?@RedfieldLiving
We all do! RT @upourstreet: Love Dig in on Church Road. Fresh veg and friendly service! @bristolindies #tradingtales

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