Independent bookshop Cover to Cover in Swansea is to take on new ownership after former owner Sarah Rees's decision to step down.
Rees, who has owned the shop for 18 years, initially intended to close the shop due to personal reasons and the difficulties caused by online competition, but asked any potential buyers to come forward through the shop's closure notice. As a result, music writer Tim Batcup, who has had experience working for Dylan's Bookstore in Swansea, stepped forward to run the shop and will officially take the reins from Rees in the first week in August.
Detailing the decision to close, a statement on the bookshop's website read: "The energy and enthusiasm needed to run a busy independent bookshop can be exciting and yet challenging. The constant competition from the internet continues to affect the High Street, and bookselling in particular. Also, following a dip in health at the start of the year, Sarah decided after 36 years working in the book trade, that it was now the right time to make the decision."
Rees told The Bookseller: “I shall really miss the shop and working in the trade, which I’ve been involved in in some form for 36 years. [However] I'm very glad that the shop will continue as an independent bookshop under Tim's ownership.”
A statement from the shop said: "Tim Batcup has an excellent background in the book trade, having worked with Jeff Towns at Dylans Bookstore for many years, running his own bookshop in Swansea, and more recently working with the library service. He is so passionate about books, and relishes the opportunity to be a strong independent bookshop here in Mumbles. He looks forward to continued support from the village and its many visitors."
Rees' last day in charge was on Friday (30th June), and the shop will be closed for the month of July. It will reopen under Batcup's ownership in August.