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Hastings & St. Leonards on-line community newspaper

Tim Barton: old hand in new bookstore (photo: Marci Buzkova).

Shock! Horror! New bookshop opens!

As small bookstores struggle to survive in the shadow of the Amazon monolith, Chris Connelley applauds a new local business that bucks the national trend.

The recent closure of the much-loved Oxfam bookshop on Queen’s Road has prompted much autumnal blubbing by local bibliophiles deprived of a precious literary resource.

Just one month later though, there is cause for celebration, as St. Leonards-based cultural entrepreneur Tim Barton steps into the breach, opening his new, cheekily-monikered bookshop, BOOKBUSTER, just metres away from where Oxfam used to be, in premises formerly occupied by a gone-bust DVD hire store with a rather similar name.

The shop sees Tim scale up from his Thursday Hastings town centre market stall to more regular retail premises, drawing on his extensive London book trade experience in the 1980s and 1990s to source an eclectic stock appealing to all ages and interests.

His shelves offer mainly new titles, with some second-hand material, including a niche high-end rare editions corner, stuffed with signed delights from the late Iain Banks and Tom Sharpe, and the very much living and sometime local, legend Iain Sinclair.

The punters are coming...(photo: Marci Buzkova).

With new stock arriving daily, a left-field soundtrack to ensure we linger longer (Tim has also built up a cult after-dark following as DJ Dunderhead) and the promise of live events to come – think author readings and signings – BOOKBUSTER promises to be more than just another short-life let, bringing a little lustre back to an area that for many is little more than a short-cut to Morrisons.

BOOKBUSTER. Good news for book lovers. Good news for Queens Road. Good news for Hastings. Go spend some money there today.

BOOKBUSTER is at 39 Queen’s Road, Hastings. Opening hours: 9am-6pm Monday to Saturday, 10-4 Sundays.

 

Posted 12:28 Friday, Oct 18, 2013 In: Shops & Things