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‘Struggling’ Wood Green bookshop appeals for more sales

PUBLISHED: 17:43 28 February 2011

Owners Simon Key (left) and Tim West hope to be in the clear in nine months. Picture: Tony Gay

Owners Simon Key (left) and Tim West hope to be in the clear in nine months. Picture: Tony Gay

TONY GAY at tonephote@aol.com

THE only independent bookshop in Wood Green has launched a direct appeal to its customers to save it from closing.

The Big Green Bookshop first opened in March 2008. Picture: Tony Gay

The Big Green Bookshop, in Brampton Park Road, say the next nine months are crucial in keeping it alive - and is asking customers to buy one extra book to help pay off a costly bank loan.

Owners Simon Key and Tim West say the last year has been “one of the most difficult” and unless they sell at least 1,000 extra books they will be forced to shut up shop.

Mr Key said in last week’s appeal: “We can’t really afford to have another nine months like the nine we just had, and despite all your amazing support we are struggling.

“We sincerely hope that you want The Big Green Bookshop to remain here and value what we do and so we are asking for your help.

“Our bank loan now has nine months to go until it’s paid off. This is our biggest single outgoing each month. Once the loan has been paid off we will be in a relatively stable position.”

He added that although the news came as a shock to their loyal customer base, they never considered keeping quiet about their troubles for fear it would be too late to save them, citing the closure of Crouch End book store Prospero’s Books in December as a warning.

The shop opened in March 2008 after the Wood Green Waterstone’s that the pair both managed shut down with very little notice. It has always attracted big names, like Well Self, ex Libertine Carl Barat and more recently Rowland Rivron, to their author talks and also hosts popular children’s events, quizzes, knitting circles, gigs and storytelling sessions.

Mr West said: “The point is it’s not too late - we need to do this now before it becomes too late. It’s a very negative thing to write about, we are struggling, but we just need people to buy more books.”

The response to the appeal has already surprised the owners - the shop was the sixth most trended London topic on Twitter on Friday, just two spots below Colonel Gaddafi and Mr Key said he has been “brought to tears on more than one occasion over people’s generosity”.

A “strugglometer” on their website says they have already raised almost a quarter of the cash needed to bring them in the clear in just three days.

Starter For Ten author David Nicholls is also backing their campaign by offering to appear in the shop sometime over the next few weeks.

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