A TINY bookshop has been named as one of the top 10 small stores in the UK by a group of MPs.
Over the years the Hayling Island Bookshop has been at the forefront of countless community projects on the island.
Its owner, Marie Telford, has thrown herself into running a brilliant business which attracts world class authors and has sponsored Hayling’s Scarecrow Festival for the past four years.
Marie and her husband Colin also work closely with schools across Portsmouth in partnership with the Portsmouth School Library Service.
The couple are delighted that the shop, in Mengham, has been honoured by members of the All Party Parliamentary Small Shops Group.
Marie was invited to the 2011 Parliamentary Best Small Shop Awards at the Terrace Pavilion of the House of Commons to enjoy a gala reception and to pick up the award.
She said: ‘Although we didn’t win the overall award, we were delighted to make the final 10 and be invited to the House of Commons.
‘We take the work we do in schools with authors and with our various festivals very seriously and believe that it helps to build the readers of the future.’
The parliamentary group promotes the interests of small shops, within government, the media and among consumers.
Tory MP David Willetts nominated the Hayling Bookshop.
Mr Willetts said: ‘They really contribute to the local community.
‘They are always hosting events there and they are so active in thinking of ideas for marketing Hayling and the wider area.
‘They look way beyond their particular shop for the community as a whole.’
Marie also sits on the Book Sellers Advisory Panel for independent bookshops across the UK.
Go to haylingislandbookshop.co.uk.