Lifeline Canberra CEO Carrie Leeson said the charity has opened a new retail space, to fill the hole of the iconic Lifeline Bookfair. Photo Kerrie Brewer.

Book lovers yearning to get back to a classic Lifeline Canberra Bookfair rejoice – because the renowned local charity has brought back the community favourite in a slightly different way.

Book Lovers Lane opened for business last Thursday (23 July) at the Niche Markets within the Fyshwick Fresh Food Markets and is the charity’s first ever permanent book store.

Filling the shelves with the much loved bookfair stock, Lifeline Canberra CEO Carrie Leeson has promised shelves filled with books, DVDs, CDs and more.

“Essentially it’s the same quality you would find at our Bookfairs and all the same prices,” she said. 

“There may be less in terms of genre because of how much space we have, but we are monitoring what people want and what they are buying and bringing in more of that from the warehouse.”

Lifeline usually holds its iconic Bookfairs three times per year but has been unable to hold its most recent event due to COVID-19 restrictions.

All funds raised from Book Lovers Lane will go directly to the charity’s Crisis Support Service.

Ms Leeson said the Niche Market location was perfect for the new retail space.

“The vibe and the feel is in line with our organisation. It’s a grounded retail space and lots of the retailers have crafted their products with love,” she said. 

“That links into the ethos of our charity as the books are donations from our community, and we handle them with love to put them back out to the community.

“The markets are a community-oriented space and that’s what Lifeline is all about.”

The store will be restocking weekly, and all donations should be made by following the guidelines on the Lifeline website.

Ms Leeson said the new retail store was a worthy substitute until the Bookfairs were back up and running.

“We have all the processes in place now after our opening weekend and we are ready to entertain larger crowds,” she said.

“There will be events, ambassadors, mascots out there in the same Bookfair and Lifeline spirit.

“We will always find a way to bring that to the community,” she smiled.

The store can accommodate up to 80 people at a time in line with current COVID-19 restrictions, and hand sanitiser and gloves are available at the door. 

The store will open on Thursday and Friday from 10am to 4pm, and between 9am and 4pm on Saturday and Sunday.

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