Eulogy for all secondhand bookshops of past, present and future as the lights turn off and the door locks for the last time on The Little Second Hand Bookshop of Byron Bay.
I write this eulogy with great sorrow at the passing of yet another one of the Byron Shire’s iconic and original businesses, which originally drew people to its shores.
A small family business that had survived for nearly 30 years in Byron, was saved by a young couple from closing down eight years ago, which enabled the much-loved bookshop to continue. But owing to the ravages of the lockdowns, floods and gentrification of Byron, it has at last had to farewell its many friends this week.
The bookshop was the haunt of not just the locals but overseas visitors and the myriad of holidaymakers. Many times we were emailed by overseas visitors to inform us they would be returning and telling us of their travels. From Kyiv to Kingston Town Jamaica, where a book that bore our stamp was found – how far and what tales could it tell of its travels to the other side of the world? We were also sent a copy of a book in which the author had made a dedication to us in its first pages. We were humbled.
I did not want to close the doors for the last time without honouring its steadfast commitment to the locals and generous wishes that it received throughout its last weeks. We would like to thank all those who supported us in its amazing journey. So long, and thanks for all the fish.