Turn­ing over a new page

Book­store a way to con­nect with the com­mu­nity

Manjimup-Bridgetown Times - - News - Holly Thomp­son

Man­jimup had been with­out a book­store for a num­ber of years, un­til Vet­ted Books came to town.

Owner Alan Lloyd opened the store at Easter and op­er­ates four days a week from Wed­nes­day to Satur­day 10am to 4pm.

“I opened the book­shop in my re­tire­ment be­cause I needed some­thing to do and I had lots of records and books at home and this was a good way of do­ing some­thing with them,” Alan said.

“In the two years it’s taken to set the book­shop up I’ve been buy­ing more and more books and records and so I’ve hardly had to touch the ones at home.”

Alan said in those two years he re­placed the roof, stripped out all the as­bestos, painted the walls and then set up the shelves and or­gan­ised the books.

Alan wanted to pro­vide a ser­vice he knew the com­mu­nity wanted and also hoped to be­come more in­volved with the com­mu­nity at the same time.

“All my work­ing life I’ve worked away from the district, now be­ing in re­tire­ment gives me the chance to get to know the com­mu­nity and hope­fully more peo­ple might recog­nise my face around town,” he said.

“It’s been great, the sup­port of the lo­cal com­mu­nity since I’ve been open, and peo­ple have been do­nat­ing books and I’ve been col­lect­ing books at fairs and garage sales around the place for years.”

Be­fore Alan owned a book­store he was a pro­fes­sional en­gi­neer and worked for 12 years at Muja Power Sta­tion, then an­other 12 years at Wagerup Re­fin­ery and also worked at other mine sites.

Alan said now he had re­tired from these jobs, open­ing the book­store was some­thing he had greatly en­joyed.

“I’ve been very pleased with the way peo­ple have sup­ported the book­shop be­cause it’s been a while since there’s been a book­shop in town and the cus­tomers are anx­ious to see that a book­shop suc­ceeds and is able to stay,” he said.

Alan not only runs the book­store but is also a mem­ber of sev­eral com­mu­nity or­gan­i­sa­tions around town.

“I am a mem­ber of the Lions Club and was trea­surer for a few years there,” he said.

“We raise funds through wood raf­fles and we’ll be at the Cherry Har­mony Fes­ti­val and Car­ols by Can­dle­light in the park this year.”

He has also been a part of the Com­mu­nity Re­source Cen­tre for about eight years and is also trea­surer of the War­ren Arts Coun­cil.

The arts coun­cil runs mu­sic events like the Blue­grass and Old Time Mu­sic Week­end and Alan said they hoped to or­gan­ise an event around clas­si­cal mu­sic in the near fu­ture.

“We’ve also or­gan­ised an­other blue­grass per­former ar­riv­ing just af­ter the Bridgetown Blues, Mike Comp­ton, who’s one of the best man­dolin play­ers in the world,” he said.

Alan said he would like to run the book­store and be a mem­ber of these com­mu­nity or­gan­i­sa­tions for a while yet.

“I opened the place with the in­ten­tion of see­ing how it goes for five years and by that stage I’ll be old enough to give it away for some­one else to run,” he said.

The store holds a wide va­ri­ety of books on all dif­fer­ent top­ics in­clud­ing Aus­traliana, Alan’s spe­cial in­ter­est area.

“I haven’t even tried to count the num­ber of books I have,” he said.

The book­store is lo­cated on Gi­blett Street and Alan said he was al­ways happy for peo­ple to bring in more old books and records to ex­change.

I’ve been very pleased with the way peo­ple have sup­ported the book­shop be­cause it’s been a while since there’s been a book­shop in town. Vet­ted Books owner Alan Lloyd

Pic­ture: Holly Thomp­son

Vet­ted Books store owner Alan Lloyd with his col­lec­tion of books.

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