Rare Malvern independent bookshop to shut
A store described by its owner as the only independent bookshop selling new books in a Worcestershire town is to close in a fortnight.
Stuart Phillips-Broadhurst, from Beacon Books, Malvern, said e-books and online booksellers had had "a very adverse effect" on it in the last two years.
The shop, which has traded for nearly 25 years, will shut on 21 January.
Herefordshire and Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce said it was "sad news for local independent retail".
Mr Phillips-Broadhurst, who has been at the Worcester Road site with his wife for about 10-and-a-half years, said it was very much the "end of an era".'Selling gift ware'
The owner said he knew "things were going downwards" from early 2010 when there was snow.
He added: "I know from talking to other booksellers that they found this. It was almost as if people found the online bookselling.
"Over the last year I think some 69 independent bookshops have closed.
"What tends to be happening now is that people [booksellers] are diversifying into cafes.
"I know one down in the south of England that is actually going into chocolate as well and another one where they split half the bookshop into books and the other half they're now selling gift ware."
Gary Woodman, head of policy and education at the area's chamber of commerce, said: "Whilst we support people buying products online, the sad news is that large global companies... are now dominating online markets and it's affecting our traditional high streets.
"Our belief is that whilst we should embrace online sales, consumers need to support local retailers if we are to keep our local independents alive and kicking."