New haven for book lovers

Bookshop owner Mike Lynott travelled around Britain looking for the right place to begin a new life. Leaving his home in Stirling, he visited the Lake District and the Cotswolds and drove as far as Skegness before deciding Bexhill was the place for him.

He found the right premises for the book shop he had planned for five years - an empty shop at the corner of St Leonards and Sea Road - and set about refurbishment himself.

He has created a peaceful old fashioned library atmosphere complete with a leather-topped desk and even a comfortable armchair for a customer to settle into. The shelves are full of novels for booklovers to browse through and choose from - there is also a selection of biographies and histories of war.

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On Saturday morning the Town Mayor, Cllr Paul Lendon, dropped by the declare the shop officially open.

He said: "This is a marvellous shop to open in light of the other bookshop in Sea Road that has just recently closed after 17 years of trading. I wish Mike every success for the future."

Mike said: "It has been quite promising - people have been very nice.

I opened earlier that I expected because people were coming in during the week.

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"When I was moving I spent two or three weeks driving around the country to see a place I liked. Then I came to Bexhill and thought there was a lot of independent shops here, not many of the big chains, then I saw the shop from the outside and liked the look of it.

"This is something I planned for many years - I always fancied having a bookshop

- then I was working for a company I didn't like much and I thought, why not do it?

"From this past week with people coming in I feel very optimistic.

"Obviously I had a few jitters while I was fixing the place up, but people have been very nice and very keen to get in. I think as long as I have got what they are looking for, I should be OK."