Wednesday, 7 May 2008

Former SPCK shops: Church Times letters / Shops withdrawn from auction

Church Times Letters

This week's Church Times has several letters that relate to my news item from last week's paper, 'Former SPCK shops to be auctioned'. An extract from the letter from Mrs Margery Roberts about the Westminster premises (click through for the whole thing):

This bookshop is leased by the Society of the Faith to the SPCK. Some months ago, we were asked to consider an assignment of that lease to St Stephen the Great (SSG). We made considerable efforts to obtain appropriate and satisfactory information about SSG's finances and management structure, but, in the end, our trustees had to consider the proposed assignment without any reassuring material. They turned down the application, and the SPCK then decided to surrender the lease on the break date provided for in the lease, which happens to be this May.

Mrs Roberts says that my report 'may have been misleading', but I'm not quite sure what she means by this. I said in the report that "The Westminster bookshop at Faith House was closed on 11 April", but I didn't go into any further detail apart from a sentence or two about the rare books side of things.

Shops are withdrawn from auction

The four shops due to be auctioned by Colliers CRE in London on 13 May have been withdrawn from the auction (Thomas mentioned this in the comments last week). I understand that the shops have been withdrawn because there are covenants in the deeds which restrict the use of the buildings in some way. The shops, in Bradford, Canterbury, Exeter, and York are apparently still for sale.

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