After visiting Bognor Regis and reminiscing about a childhood spent in a sleepy seaside town, it occurred to me that it might be time to revisit the place I still refer to as home: Bexhill-on-Sea. I had initially planned to make a quick trip to the museum, but as I made my way through the charity shop-filled streets, a maximal gem caught my eye.
For as long as I can remember, Second Spin has occupied the corner of a crossroad, directly opposite Bexhill Library. Now, this place has a mysterious charm and while I have frequented the shop for years, I have rarely intended to make a purchase. It is not what is on sale that draws me in, but the atmosphere.
As a child, the shop felt magical. With so many signed photographs of celebrities and tiny details hidden amongst the merchandise, I never got bored. The space was also unlike anything I knew. In fact, I don’t think I entirely believed that it was a real shop! My photographs go some way to illustrate why this place is so unique (cassette tape after cassette tape, posters everywhere, and stylish vintage lamps emitting a subdued light) but it is best to really ‘be’ there.
Second Spin is also one of the few places that still sells a comprehensive range of music on tape. Why you may ask? Well, the steady stream of customers I witnessed buying items, including cassettes, answers this questions very simply: Bexhillians love Second Spin. And this is as much down to the owner, as it is the use of space. During my visit, he demonstrated an astute understanding of his customers’ needs, as well as a connoisseur-like knowledge of music.
It is shops like this that encapsulate the spirit of Bexhill. The space is quaint; it is about twenty years behind technology; it has a slow pace; it seems to exist in a bubble; and, above everything else, it is strangely comforting! Perhaps my sense of the space is tainted by childhood experiences but Second Spin is definitely worth a visit.