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Bookshop Day 2016

October 18th, 2016 | Posted in Blog | Comments Off on Bookshop Day 2016
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bookshop-dayThe Bookseller’s Association announced back in August that it would be holding the inaugural Bookshop Day across the UK and Ireland on Saturday 8th October. The aim was to bring readers, who may have been swayed by online retailers such as Amazon, back into brick and mortar bookstores.

Over 2000 bookshops across the country took part, with events including book clubs and readings, such as Ann Cleeves appearing at Far From the Madding Crowd bookstore in Linlithgow. As an added incentive, there were limited edition Books Are My Bag tote bags designed by award-winning book cover designer, Coralie Bickford-Smith, which were exclusively available in bookshops on the day.

The event was heavily promoted on social media with publishers and bookshops sharing the hashtag #BookshopDay across Twitter, with the Penguin Twitter account (@PenguinUKBooks) writing: “Your mission, should you choose to accept it (& you should), is to head to your local bookshop and buy a book… or ten.”

In a clever move by the Bookseller’s Association, the event was planned to coincide with the start of the festive buying period with new titles by PD James, Graham Norton, Michael Palin and Margaret Atwood, amongst others being released on 6th October.

So now that a few days have passed and the dust has settled, how successful was Bookshop Day? The Bookseller reported initial findings that footfall in bookshops nationwide was much higher than an average Saturday, and sales also increased. The Bookseller also reported that Edward Scotland from Mr B’s Emporium of Reading Delights in Bath stated that “not all our customers were aware” of the event. However, with such good reports of a successful inaugural Bookshop Day, there can be no doubt that as awareness grows in following years, this could be an annual event of great importance for booksellers in the UK.

By Rachel McCann