Imaginary Bookshops (1)


The helter skelter itself was rescued from a derelict pier by an anonymous bookdealer and relocated to a quiet corner in a nearby park. Its blistered deckchair stripes rise unexpectedly from between the conifers. A small sign beside the often shut door advises visitors that there are no formal opening times and to please do try again. When the door stands ajar you can venture into the dim, salty smelling interior. As you climb the tight curl of the staircase a single, packed bookshelf winds alongside you, but it is difficult to read the spines in the splintered light.

The round room at the top is tiny and thick with books. There is no room for a bookseller, only an honesty box and a pile of paper bags and sellotape dispenser. So you must pack your own purchase before you take up a hessian mat from beside the exit and set off down the slide.