The Longman Dictionary says "baker's" and "barber's" could mean their respective establishments in British English. If so, is the following OK?

There is a two-storey barber's across the street.

3 Answers 3


Yes, that is fine. It is somewhat odd (why is the number of storeys relevant?), but there is no mistake.

Similarly "There is a dilapidated barber's down the street". One of the main differences between "barber's" and "barbershop" is that the latter is primarily American.

  • Thank you. Do you find this odd too? "There is a two-storey barbershop across the street."
    – Apollyon
    Feb 20 at 6:43
  • I'm comparing the difference, if any, between "barber's" and "barbershop."
    – Apollyon
    Feb 20 at 6:43
  • 1
    "two storey barbershop" sounds equally odd. You normally don't classify barber's/barbershops by their number of floors, as that is an irrelevant measure.
    – James K
    Feb 20 at 7:35
  • 1
    The main difference between barber's and barbershop is that the latter is mainly American. Feb 20 at 7:51
  • 1
    @SoronelHaetir You're right, but it is a rare situation. Barber's are nearly always on a single (ground) floor, since they depend so much on walk-in business. I did know one which had a basement (for men and children) and the ground floor (for (higher value) women.) In locations where ground space is so valuable that a barbers would want to spread up, then the buildings would probably not be single business occupancy. More likely there would be a barbershop on the ground floor and flats on the floors above, I'm not sure this is relavent.
    – James K
    Feb 20 at 20:00

Sample: There is a two-storey barber's across the street.

No, but not due to grammar. Barber shops and bakeries are on the ground or first floor of a building.

They may be located on the ground or first floor of a two-storey building but they do not constitute a two-storey building.

I was at the barber's [shop] across the street this morning.

By the way, there is no difference with AmE in these cases.

  • The OP's sentence is highly contrived and as always the OP never explains why they created (or copied) a certain construction.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Mar 12 at 12:32
  • @Mari-LouA It sure is contrived as barber's are always on the ground floor and even if exceptionally one isn't, the likelihood of it being two storey is really slim.
    – Lambie
    Mar 12 at 14:24

We Brits do this with a lot of professions which are also establishments.

Butcher's, baker's, candlestick maker's*, grocer's, doctor's, dentist's, tobacconist's, cobbler's, barber's, hairdresser's… the list goes on.
We would rarely add 'shop' to this. These can easily stand alone.

"I'm going to the doctor's next Tuesday" really describes the visit to the establishment rather than the person, though without further qualification one would expect their purpose would be to see the doctor.

*Just to complete the set with reference to the old nursery rhyme, rub-a-dub-dub ;)

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