Owner of beloved Chichester bookshop bids customers farewell after almost twenty years behind the counter

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Ahead of its closure next month, the owner of a popular Chichester bookshop has bid customers a fond farewell.

Kim’s Bookshop, on South Street, is set to close on the week commencing July 22, after almost 20 years in the city centre. The shop, well known for selling second hand and collectible books, first opened in 2010, only a year after its sister shop in Arundel. In that time, its become a favourite amongst city bibliophiles, who love its cosy character, reasonable prices and wide selection of books.

Speaking to Sussex World, owner Linn Flowers-Hearne thanked customers for their years of support, but said it was the right time to say goodbye: “It was a very hard decision, because it’s a lovely shop with very lovely customers and reasonable overheads, but I need to close to make life easier for myself and focus on just the one shop (in Arundel.)

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“The term of the lease is coming up at the end of July, and I have a fourth grandchild, so I need to be a little more available (...) t was very difficult, because I love it. But there’s a lot of physical work involved in running a bookshop like this; a lot of lifting and carrying from one shop to another.”

Kim's Bookshop.Kim's Bookshop.
Kim's Bookshop.

She added that her reasons for closing the shop are entirely personal, and not because Kim’s itself was struggling to make ends meet. In fact, Mrs Flowers-Hearne said, businesses is as good as ever. “We certainly have a very active customer base who love us and some of them were nearly in tears when we told them. It’s nothing to do with a lack of business, we’re still selling lots of books.”

Just like they have through the shop’s many years in the city centre, Mrs Flowers-Hearne said her customers have been a huge support throughout the decision-making process. “They’ve been a great support, we started a 25 per cent off sale, and every body’s been loving that and filling their bags. But mostly they’ve been shocked and quite upset that we’re going. Hopefully a lot of them will still come to the Arundel shop.”

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