Sunday, April 20, 2008

Bookshop challenge

I felt rather strange about today, being here 'on the sick' and not far off on holiday. A Saturday without preparations to make. Bed at a reasonable hour, nice and relaxed, but I still work up before the alarm would have sounded at 7.10am, so I got up and went to the Cathedral Eight O'clock Eucharist. I enjoyed the silence, and being on the receiving end.

After breakfast, I felt restless, so I went down to City URC for their morning service, which gave me the chance to be on the receiving end of a good half hour sermon from my friend Tom Arthur. Afterwards over coffee, he told me that the bookshop under the church tower had closed down three weeks ago. This was the first I'd heard of it. SPCK sold out to the American Orthodox Society of St Stephen, which simply didn't have the ability to make the shops any more viable, as well as having a knack of treating the staff in ways few appreciated. They'd simply decided to shut the place and terminate the lease without discussion, and that was that.

Tom and the City church elders are now looking for ways to re-open the shop, re-configuring its stock according to niche market demands. They are looking for other church partners to buy into the scheme. There's a lot of work to be done to survey the market, put together a business plan. I'd really like to be able to help on this. I can't believe I hadn't heard about the closure. That's what you get for not reading the 'Church Times' regularly I guess.

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