OPINION: Paper Plus Merivale says goodbye

Simon Grant says goodbye to his Merivale customers.

Merivale Paper Plus has closed this month, so owner Simon Grant has penned a goodbye to the loyal customers who have supported the business over the years

It was with great sadness that we closed our doors for the final time on September 10 after being part of the Merivale Mall family as a Paper Plus for more than 23 years.

Unfortunately, the mall has decided not to renew our lease, and has instead signed up Whitcoulls in our place.

We are all gutted and really wanted to stay on and keep the store locally-owned, but the mall has decided to go in a different direction.

We have loved being part of the community here and I have spent more than half my life working in this store.

My mother and father purchased the Merivale Bookshop in 1994, making the big leap to own their own business and re-brand it into a Paper Plus.

From there, they worked hard to build a great store, one that was unique and we were enormously proud of.

We have gone through the highs (a cue the length of the mall to meet Richie McCaw during his book launch) and the lows (the sudden loss of my father in 2014), the rise and fall of e-books, and the thousands of earthquakes and the associated repairs and clean-ups.

We have enjoyed being part of the community, donating many prizes to school fundraisers and local charities, and the staff have loved chatting with all our regular customers. We have also supported many local authors, stocking their books and hosting book launches and signings.

Thank you to everyone who has shopped with us over the past 23 years.

We will continue to look for alternative locations in the area, and will make a big song and dance should we re-open elsewhere.

In the meantime, I will relocate to our other Paper Plus store in The Hub Hornby along with a couple of the Merivale staff, where we will continue to offer the same great range and service.

Feel free to come in and say ‘hi’ if you are over that way.