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Historic Ibis Bookshop in Banstead closes as owner starts rival to Amazon
A historic bookshop has closed its doors for the last time as its owner starts an online rival to Amazon.
The community had rallied round and customers pledged about £100,000 to keep the Ibis open by buying its freehold in Banstead High Street.
Unfortunately the crowdfunding plan failed and the bookshop could not make ends meet in the face of rising rents and competition from online retailers.
But Linda Jones, the owner of the Ibis, has decided to take on Amazon at its own game by starting a mobile service called Bookjuice.
Like Amazon Bookjuice said it will offer free next day delivery, though this is limited to a five-mile radius of Banstead, but they will always pay UK taxes and never deliver a damaged book.
Its website proclaims: "It’s time to take on the big boys! We will match Amazon on price."
Back in December, Ms Jones said if the bookshop was forced to close then she planned to start Bookjuice where people can order books online or by phone.
An image of the Bookjuice website
She told the Epsom Guardian: "We are hoping it would be a little local Amazon. A little local river or stream. I would commit to matching Amazon’s prices and next day delivery within a five-mile radius."
At the time Ms Jones said she would run the service in Banstead, deliver the books herself and supply books to anyone else who wants to set up a similar business.
Of the Ibis shutting down, a local trader, who asked not be named, said: "It’s really sad. It’s been going for years and years but then people buy online now.
"We were willing to support her in the quest to buy the freehold but it wasn’t to be."
The Ibis opened in 1938 and Ms Jones took over ownership in November 2011.
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