How five York indie shops are surviving the lockdown

19 Feb 2021 @ 8.01 am
| Shopping

Independent businesses have faced an extremely challenging year, with many having to find new ways to reach customers to survive.

York has an expansive array of marvellous independent businesses on offer. We checked in with five to see how they have adapted.

Dog and Bone Vintage

Inside Dog and Bone

Miss thrifting at your local vintage store? Us too, but here’s the next best thing.

Dog and Bone Vintage have masses of nostalgic treasures just waiting to slide into your wardrobe.

With admirable understatement, owner Nic Barker said Covid “hasn’t been brilliant” for the Castlegate store, but remains hopeful for the future.

He’s expanding the store in York ready for re-opening. “We’ve been pretty busy when we’ve been back open, so there’s definitely an appetite for the shop.”

Luckily, you can shop Dog and Bone’s huge collection of vintage goods online whilst we wait.


Botanic is York’s hub for gorgeous, exotic and unusual house plants. With highly knowledgeable and enthusiastic staff, it’s a plant haven.

Although Botanic aren’t selling their plants online, they’re waiting patiently until it’s safe to open their Walmgate store again – and offering all kinds of plant advice and tips whilst producing regular content on their Instagram page.

If you have houseplants of your own, be sure to head over and check out all their latest tips and plant hacks – and don’t forget to show them some love!

Corner Gallery 

Corner Gallery, a local contemporary gallery in the heart of York, sells a hand picked selection of affordable, stylish art, all made by local artists.

Owner Kay Dower told us: “Since lockdown I’ve been working from home – my home is my gallery.”

With the physical store being closed, it’s become trickier harder for artists.

“It’s just hard to get your art in front of people. I’ve been operating online and doing local deliveries through my website.”

FortyFive Vinyl 

Dom preparing FortyFive’s fine coffee

Who’d have thought coffee and vinyl would make a great combination?

FortyFive Vinyl, a quirky cafe on Micklegate, boasts more than a thousand vinyl records available to purchase in-store – making it the perfect space for a coffee break for any music fan.

The cafe is closed under lockdown rules, of course – but lovers of caffeine and music still able to get their FortyFive fix online.

Their website allows you to purchase their signature coffee collection, as well as their merchandise and a range of their vinyls. You can even treat someone to a gift card to use in-store when they re-open.

York Gin

Thank gin it’s Friday!

Gin lovers, rejoice! York Gin has some of the world’s best gins on offer – made right here in York! Although their beautiful 16th century shop is temporarily closed, business is still booming.

York Gin co-founder Emma Godivala told us: “As a whole, we’ve had to shift our focus. We’ve gone online and are really focused on local services and delivery to make sure people can still get their gin, we even throw in some free tonics to make sure they’re happy!”

So, although you can’t sip your favourite York Gin at your local pub or restaurant, there’s no reason you can’t enjoy it from the comfort of your own home.

You can order York Gin online by visiting their website here – and use the code YORKMIX to get five per cent off!