Volunteers are wishing for a Christmas miracle to help keep the Treehouse Bookshop open after news it must close by the end of the month.
The community bookshop and charity venture has had its lease terminated, meaning it must vacate premises in Abbey End on Christmas Eve.
Victoria Mier, who met her lifelong ambition by opening the shop in 2013, is determined not to let it put an end to the venture she and others have worked so hard to create. But said to keep going after Christmas will require new premises to house books and cater for community film nights, community evenings and potential fundraisers.
And that nothing is certain as she appeals for help to keep popular open mic nights and poetry readings going amid the upheaval.
Victoria, a former art history lecturer,said: “We have always had a slightly precarious lease, which has suited us in many ways.
“But now we must move out and are looking for an affordable space that is big enough for small events.
“The most likely scenario at the moment, given that time is pressing, is that we will close at our current premises on Christmas Eve and store the remainder of our stock and our furniture, then reopen as soon as we can.
“We are trying to think laterally as well as at the more obvious options, and if anyone has any suggestions we would be happy to hear them.”
The shop is a commercial venture, but run on a not-for-profit basis with emphasis on promoting literature and handing proceeds to charities such as the Woodland Trust.
The building will be used by another, not yet named business, which it is assumed will meet higher lease costs.
News of the move comes just weeks after neighbouring business, Town and Country Furniture was asked to leave its premises by the end of the year to make way for Shakespeare Hospice shop.
Town and Country will continue trading in the town but not from the current building.
Victoria hopes to follow suit as she appeals for help to find new premises suitable for the shop to relocate.
She is open to sharing retail space, or finding a temporary base until later in the New Year as she considers all ideas to move forward.
But said “nothing is certain” until new permanent and affordable premises can be found- and that a move may be closely followed by fundraisers to help cover costs for the small business.
Anyone with ideas, or who can help, can contact Victoria at the bookshop, at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 07901 705848.