8:30am Friday 14th December 2012
By Daniel Chipperfield
A TROUBLED bookstore in Dursley is set to close at the end of January.
The Lighthouse Christian Bookshop in Silver Street will shut its doors after providing local churches and residents with Christian literature, cards and gifts for 20 years.
Shop manager, and chairman of the board of trustees for the store, Elisabeth Palmer, said the financial climate and increased competition from the internet was "killing us".
In September this year, the Lighthouse launched an urgent appeal with the Gazette for more volunteers to come forward to help run the shop if it was to continue.
The store was also in desperate need of a new manager after the previous incumbent had to resign due to family health problems.
Despite seeing some volunteers come in, the trustees decided at a meeting last month to close the store.
"We knew it was on the cards," said Mrs Palmer.
"We tried to come up with all sorts of different ways, we have tried everything.
"You need to have the finances behind you for changes but it just wasn’t viable and we did not feel it was the Christian thing to get into debt."
In an email to Churches Together, Mrs Palmer said they (the Lighthouse group) had been very happy helping to supply local churches and be of service to the community.
"We also know therefore, that God has other plans to help make his gospel easily locally available," she said.
"We thank everyone for all your support over the last 20 years, it has been much appreciated."
When it was established in 1992, the exact amount of money needed to set up the business was given by an anonymous donation.
A closing sale is currently being held at the shop, while a bigger sale including fixtures and equipment in the store is planned for sometime in January nearer the closing date.
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