Sunday, November 20, 2011

Snippets from Sheppard's Confidential: News & Events in Antiquarian & Second-Hand Books

The news that the Booksellers Association is downsizing and moving to
smaller premises is not surprising. The numbers of booksellers in the new
book trade has fallen from 1,483 (in 2006) to 1,099. The BA is putting up a
good fight of course on behalf of their members. Obviously, the Internet and
supermarkets have had a huge and damaging effect but it is interesting that
the BA is now also blaming charity shops.

One quote by the Charity Retail Association is odd: 'We think that independent retailers could be supported in a variety of ways without penalizing charity shops . . . and we would support
greater help for independent booksellers in the current economic climate.

 Really.  Then why not government help for every shop that is struggling? And
from whose purse does this financial help come?

Reports that the UK MPs are pushing the Government to have the cheque
guarantee card restored is good news - anything that makes it easier for
collectors to pay by cheque will help our trade.

UK: Library closures declared unlawful!

Many councils in the UK have elected to reduce or close library services to contribute to the
necessary reductions in spending. But a decision which could see 21 libraries close in
Somerset and Gloucestershire has now been been ruled "unlawful". Somerset County
Council wanted to withdraw funding for 11 libraries and Gloucestershire County Council
wanted to stop funding 10 libraries. At the High Court, Judge Martin McKenna said the
closures did not comply with "public sector equality duties" owed to vulnerable social

  Children's laureate Julia Donaldson welcomed yesterday's High Court as "the best news
I’ve had all year".

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