Blackwell’s is set to open a new store in London’s High Holborn this Friday (19th December) to capture the Christmas rush.
The company closed its Charing Cross Road store in summer this year after 19 years due to falling footfall and sales on the world famous bookselling street, pledging to soon find another venue in London.
After several months of hard negotiations with the landlord, the company will open a store in nearby 50-51 High Holborn this Friday (19th December), in time for the Christmas rush.
Blackwell's used Twitter to invite the public to the mid-day opening, saying "come and say and hello and buy a book!”
The store is nearby London School of Economics halls of residence and in the place of a former tailor’s shop. Equidistant between Holborn and Chancery Lane tube stations, the 4,500 sqft shop is spread over two floors, featuring a Benugo café.
The shop will focus on selling to Blackwell’s corporate customers and serving its business-to-business contracts, such as the relationship it has with the Ministry of Defence. To that end, the whole of the Blackwell’s corporate, professional and institutional team will be based in the store, along with the former Charing Cross Road staff and manager Steve Orchard, bringing the number of employees based there to 20.
Scott Hamilton, Blackwell’s head of sales, said: “It has been a tough, hard few months of negotiation and it will be down to the wire to open on Friday, with the aim of capturing as much of the pre-Christmas market as we can.”
The shop will have a trade books presented in the front window and also contain substantial academic and corporate departments.
“The site is absolutely brilliant, the corporate side of things is an important part of our business and we feel we can really grow that side of things based in London,” Hamilton said.
Customers responded enthusiastically to the news on Twitter. One said: “Very nice spot.” While another said: “Good news – we’ve missed you.”