Sunday, 14 April 2013

Wigtown - you disappoint me.

It's true.  Scotland's "book town" has disappointed a true bibliophile.
bookshop window in Wigtown, Scotland's National Book Town 

According to the website "new businesses and restored buildings all add to the vibrancy of the literary town" - erm, I must have missed that vibrancy, there certainly wasn't any when we were there!

"Wigtown has some twenty book-related businesses".  Yes, some of them are bookshops, others are bric-a-brac shops that have a shelf of books and have managed to get "books" on to their signage so that they can cash in on the book town status.

I'll admit, it was March, it was freezing, and there was a bitter East wind blowing, but really... overpriced food, signs for a playpark when no playpark could be found, signs for the old harbour with no distance on so that you walk and walk and have no idea how far it is, a "visitor centre" which is actually an RSPB centre (very good, friendly, interactive and welcoming in there by the way).  Only one or two of the bookshops were any good.  The welcome was missing.  The vibrancy was certainly missing.

I've been to Hay-on-Wye for a browse in the bookshops and was far more taken with the relaxing friendliness.  Wigtown appears to still be in hibernation, I certainly won't be bothering to make the journey there again.

1 comment:

  1. We went there once, a few years ago and it was alright. I think that when the Book Festival is on it might be vibrant, but when we visited it was a couple of weeks after and it was very quiet. Fortunately we were there for another reason, or I would certainly have felt disappointed. One or two of the bookshops were distinctly unwelcoming seeing that we had a small child with us, but they were in the minority. I have just remembered a book that i bought there and never read - must look for it now. xx