The owners of a historic St Andrews bookshop that will shut after 144 years have outlined the reasons behind its closure.
J&G Innes, affectionately known by many locals as ‘the Citizen shop’, has announced it will close at the end of the year.
Its ornate premises on the corner of Church Street and South Street are one of the most recognised in the region.
Jude Innes, who has run the business for the past decade since taking over from her mum Pat, explained the decision.
She said: “We are closing the shop because the three directors, myself and my two sisters, have decided to retire and spend more time with our families.”
Jude added the current financial climate was not a factor in their decision, stating it was something she and sisters Karen and Maureen had been mulling over for some time.
St Andrews ‘institution’ to close
The history of J&G Innes can be traced back to 1870, when John Innes designed and published the first St Andrews Citizen after he joined the publishing company of Robert Tullis.
Nine years later, he bought the business from the Tullis family. His brother, George, joined him and J&G Innes was formed in 1923.
Jude, the great-granddaughter of John Innes, said deciding to close the family business had been a hard decision.
She said: “It has been a very difficult decision – we are quite an institution here.
“I’ve loved everything about it – I love buying and selling, but I’ve also loved all our lovely customers and the people I’ve worked with.”
Asked about the future of the store, Jude said it was time for someone else to enjoy the “iconic” St Andrews site.
“It’s early days so we’ll have to see what happens,” she added.
She said in retirement, she plans to spend more time with her children and grandchildren, as well as pursuing her art career.
Thanks to customers from J&G Innes
Hundreds of customers have reacted to the news on social media.
Artist Emma Ball, who has had work on sale in J&G Innes, said: “A beautiful shop and one that really gave me as an artist my first break.”
Others described the closure as “very sad”.
Jude thanked all those who have supported the business for their well wishes.
“I’m just so grateful for all the support we’ve had for all the years. The loyal customer base we’ve had has been amazing.
“I’d like also to thank everyone who’s worked with us – we could not have done it without them.”