The following was printed in Issue 10 of Faith in the Moor last month. Faith in the Moor is a local community magazine from the local faith based communities.
(An edit was made by us to correct a misprint)
"Once upon a time....
Kelly Owen is the new 'resident' keeper of the Alston clock shop. Its shop front of intrinsic character attracted Kelly as did the "quirks" of its interior. Kelly explains her arrival: "I have always frequented bookshops and had a dream of having a bookshop one day."
Her lifelong companionship with books from the intimate to the professional nurtured this dream: "At home [in Bedfordshire] my Mum Sharon always read to me and my brother as did my Dad Jon. We had a limited numbers of books. However, when Mum completed a book, she would invent a follow-on story for us. We always used the local library and whenever money would allow, we added to our home collection."
Before coming here, "I studied English Literature, volunteered in the local library and went on to work in an NHS staff library, where I enjoyed talking and sharing books. Whilst there, beneficial counselling sessions arose with the NHS staff; as we encountered 'Mindfulness'. Nevertheless, my relationship with books felt constrained here."
Kelly says of books: "They are a way of understanding another person's world. A way of engaging the imagination. And topics can be better understood. I choose a book to read, according to how I feel at the time. Today, that might be, 'The Fault in Our Stars' by Jodie Picoult." (this is misprint The Fault in Our Stars is by the American Author and vlogger John Green of the Vlog Brothers YouTube channel not the equally wonderful author Jodie Picoult)
Kelly 'found' the Lake Distant first, through seasonal work as a Visitor Experience Assistant and later Alston through family holidays and was immediately drawn here. Here, that intimacy with books found a new home. The Clock Shop - the 'Once Upon a Time' bookshop - is home a wide range of 'new, vintage, secondhand, fiction and non-fiction, adult and children's books.' Its potential extends over three floors: The narrow 'quirky', entrance floor houses vintage books and adult fiction. the second floor is a haven for children: "Beatrix Potter has always been a favourite of mine and there are so many other books to fascinate children." the expansive upper floor is awaiting development and will house books for older children and adults: "When appropriate, I hope to use this wider space for events around reading, craft and arts."
Kelly's love of books had brought a rich literacy resource to our community.
We wish her every success as she fulfills her dream. MH"
We want to say thank you for the support and the wonderful write up of a shorten version on the bookshop's backstory. It is lovely to talk with MH on a wide range of subjects that did not make it it the short article.
I have an update from when the article is written and printed. The top floor is now open to visitors some updates will continue in the near future.
Look out for events coming soon. We are in the process of hopefully getting some ready in the next couple of months.
We hope all had a brilliant Christmas (or other holiday or none) and a happy New Year. 2018 was a year of mixed emotions and events and 2019 is going to be the same.