Shopping with... Rita Britton: Nothing like the local shops

Pollyanna in Barnsley, South Yorkshire, has, since 1969, been home to top designer labels which today include Comme des Garcons, Jil Sander and Yohji Yamamoto. Owner Rita Britton naturally never shops for clothes anywhere else. "I'm lucky I sell what I like, so all my clothing is taken care of."

Britton is champion of the local Barnsley shops. "In a small town everything is round the corner so we're spoiled." Britton's local florist, Hartisan (21 The Arcade tel: 01226 288588) is a mere 30 seconds away from Pollyanna, and is used both as her home and her shop. "You wouldn't believe there'd be a fantastic florist in Barnsley, but there is!" laughs Britton. "They do amazing arrangements wrapped up in big raffia bows."

At Barnsley Market, (May Day Green), she visits the antique stalls on Tuesdays to hunt out Victorian white bed linen sheets, "still tied up with blue ribbon because nobody's ever used them". At the local Design Centre (11 Shambles Street, tel: 01226 771133), Britton recently bought an "amazing" coffee table for her husband from a furniture exhibition held there.

The local shop that Britton is most thankful for is the dry cleaners, Springbox (1 Peel Arcade, tel: 01226 286897). "It was a godsend when they opened about five years ago. Before then it was a nightmare finding a dry cleaners in the North of England that knew how to care for the clothes I sell, instead of just bunging them in. Now it's nice to be able to recommend somewhere to my customers, and they do a repair service there too."

Usually Britton tends to buy her food from the local market and declares: "Barnsley has the best fresh fish market in the country!" An adamant hater of processed foods and supermarkets, she buys venison sausages and pies from Elmhurst's stall in there. For special occasions Britton likes to order food in. "If I need food in excess I have a hamper delivered, full of fantastic ice- packed food like venison and even lobster soup from Scottish Gourmet [Thistle Mills, Station Road, Biggar, ML12 6LP, tel: 01899 221001]. They've never let me down in four years now."

Obviously, Britton does leave her hometown sometimes. Work often takes her to London, Milan and Paris, but for pleasure, she can be found shopping for Georgian goblets at the open market antique fair in Newark.

"I love wine. I drink it every evening and these goblets fit about two glasses' worth. They are beautiful." The Gordon Reece Gallery in Knaresborough (Finkle Street, Knaresborough, North Yorkshire, tel: 01423 866219) is a particular Pollyanna favourite place to buy exotic antique artifacts. Britton "has a great passion" for 250-year-old tapestries from there which she puts against the "very simple white walls" in her home. She appreciates the service. "Gordon spends three months a year travelling looking for things. He's a great guy. It doesn't matter how much you're spending even if you are just buying a pair of earrings - he always has time to explain their history to you."

Another place that Britton insists is worth driving an hour out of Barnsley for is Bettys Cafe Tea Rooms in Harrogate (1 Parliament Street, Harrogate, North Yorkshire, HG1, tel: 01423 502746). "They make all their own teas and coffees and bake everything in their own bakeries. I know it seems mad to drive for an hour for a cake but it can be really relaxing to drive to places and Bettys is a must stop."

Pollyanna, 14-16 Market Hill, Barnsley, South Yorkshire, tel: 01226 291665

News
The two faces revealed by the ultraviolet light
newsScholars left shaken after shining ultraviolet light on 500-year-old Welsh manuscript
News
Rosamund Pike played Bond girld Miranda Frost, who died in Die Another Day (PA)
news
Arts and Entertainment
books
News
newsHow do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? With people like this
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: In House Counsel - Contracts

    Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This leading supplier of compliance software a...

    Recruitment Genius: Associate System Engineer

    £24000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Associate System Engineer r...

    Recruitment Genius: Executive Assistant

    Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: An Executive Assistant is required to join a l...

    Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - B2B, Corporate - City, London

    £45000 - £50000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...

    Day In a Page

    General Election 2015: The masterminds behind the scenes

    The masterminds behind the election

    How do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? By employing these people
    Machine Gun America: The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons

    Machine Gun America

    The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons
    The ethics of pet food: Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?

    The ethics of pet food

    Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?
    How Tansy Davies turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

    How a composer turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

    Tansy Davies makes her operatic debut with a work about the attack on the Twin Towers. Despite the topic, she says it is a life-affirming piece
    11 best bedside tables

    11 best bedside tables

    It could be the first thing you see in the morning, so make it work for you. We find night stands, tables and cabinets to wake up to
    Italy vs England player ratings: Did Andros Townsend's goal see him beat Harry Kane and Wayne Rooney to top marks?

    Italy vs England player ratings

    Did Townsend's goal see him beat Kane and Rooney to top marks?
    Danny Higginbotham: An underdog's tale of making the most of it

    An underdog's tale of making the most of it

    Danny Higginbotham on being let go by Manchester United, annoying Gordon Strachan, utilising his talents to the full at Stoke and plunging into the world of analysis
    Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police

    Steve Bunce: Inside Boxing

    Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police
    No postcode? No vote

    Floating voters

    How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
    Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

    By Reason of Insanity

    Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
    Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

    Power dressing is back

    But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
    Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

    Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

    Caves were re-opened to the public
    'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

    Vince Cable interview

    'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
    Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

    Promises, promises

    But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
    The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

    The death of a Gaza fisherman

    He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat