One of the most famous bookshops on London's Charing Cross Road will close within weeks following declining sales brought on by the credit crisis.
By James Hall , 05 Jan 2009 - sad story from The Telegraph:
Murder One, the crime bookshop on London's Charing Cross Road, is to close.
Charing Cross Road is renowned for its specialist and second-hand bookshops. Murder One – which is the only British bookshop where The Firm author John Grisham has carried out a book signing – is the second specialist bookshop to close or annouce its closure on the street within a week.
On New Year's Eve, specialist art bookseller Shipleys shut its doors for the last time.
The spate of closures will put the street's position as a world-renowned book-buying destination under threat. Charing Cross Road's status as one of London's cultural centres has already been dealt a heavy blow by the imminent closure of the London Astoria, the concert theatre.
Mr Jakubowski said that he was planning to retire at the end of 2009 but that the current economic climate meant that he could no longer run the store.
"I was hoping to sell but I've given up. In the current economic climate no-one took the jump," he said.
Mr Jakubowski said that all his outstanding bills to publishers will be paid. "We have never had an overdraft on our whole life. I'd rather [close] now and not prolong the agony for the next 10 months," he said.
Charing Cross Road attracts book-buyers from all around the world. Although larger stores such as Foyles, Borders and Blackwell's will remain on the street, Mr Jakubowski said that almost all of the small independent retailers have now closed.
The area's status as a book-lovers' paradise was boosted in the 1970s with the publication of 84 Charing Cross Road, a book that charted the correspondence between American writer Helene Hanff and the employees of Marks & Co, a bookshop on the street. The book was made into a film with Anne Bancroft and Anthony Hopkins.