Rickaro Books calls time on the high street after almost two decades

It has been a fixture of Horbury’s high street for nearly two decades in a time that many independent shops were replaced with carbon copy chain stores.

Friday, 31st January 2020, 11:24 am

Rickaro Books was opened by Richard and Carole Knowles 19 years ago.

Now they have decided to call time on the shop to focus on the online aspect of their business.

Richard said: “I genuinely thought I’d do it for a little while but 19 years on we’re still here.

Independent shop Rickaro books is closing down after 19 years on Horbury's high street. Pictured are owner Richard & Carole Knowles.

“It has always been profitable, not massively so but it’s never lost money. We’ve had nice loyal customers who seem to be quite sad we’re closing. In a way, it’s nice but in another it’s sad.

“It has become more challenging over the last two years so we decided it’s the right time.” Sharing the gift of reading, from the rare books the business deals in to the first stories picked up by children, has been the most important thing to Richard and Carol.

Richard said: “The best parts have been seeing children come in from being toddlers, some of whom have their own children now. And on a personal level the great books we have handled.

“And things like selling Harry Potter novels. Whatever you think of them they have changed children’s lives and we’ve had queues right down to the street. People said they haven’t seen queues like that in Horbury since rationing.”

Richard & Carole Knowles, Lynn Hesslegrave and Lucy Kent.

Though it’s the end of the shop as it stands Richard would be happy to hand over the reins.

“We don’t want a lot for the business. And I would be willing to act as a mentor for anyone who wanted to be a bookseller,” he said. “We would love to see it continue as a bookshop and we’d do anything we could to further that.”

The shop has always championed local interest literature and Richard recommended recent release The Buildings of Tudor and Stuart Wakefield by Peter Brears.

He said: “This is a wonderful book. I think it’s the most important book on Wakefield since JW Walker’s History of Wakefield.”