I went into Ilkley with my mum the other day and Carluccios had shut down really suddenly. We had only been there last week for a meal. So, we had to go to another cafe for a coffee in the sunshine – what a mare…
We had kind of expected it not to last as it was never that busy. But, it seemed really sad because I’ve got some really lovely memories of sitting outside in the sunshine with a glass of wine (obvs).
However, in a way, I think it’s a good thing because it means that the other independent businesses or Northern chains are doing better. The other cafe we went to was a Northern chain and, potentially as a result of Carluccios closing, it was heaving! There’s also another Italian in Ilkley that is always busy and people seem much more loyal to it.
On that one day we spent money at a local cafe, a new independent bakery and a local butchers which, in this world of supermarkets, seems crazy.
But, in small-ish communities it seems to work and I love it. To me, it feels quite old fashioned or European. When I have been to France in the past, I have always gone to the local shops. My favourites are obviously the Patisseries (croissants…) or the pharmacies which do the best skincare in the world and it’s so cheap!
Anyway, I think it is a much nicer experience than going to a supermarket or online shopping. You get to chat to someone (in England – my French is non-existent so I can’t claim to have a friendly chat in France), you probably get a better quality product, it helps the independent business and the town’s economy. Win-win.
I also loved taking my little rope bag out to put all of the shopping in. If you’re doing it solely for the stylishness, definitely buy fruit to put in it! It looks much better than a bag of bread but you know… Can’t have everything!
Thanks for reading! Let me know your thoughts!!