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Arts shop in Uxbridge to close after 116 years in town

By Rebecca Horn

A. Boville Wright Ltd on Uxbridge’s high street remains open until February 8th before shutting its doors for good.

Robert Wright, the owner of the arts shop known as Bovilles, admitted that having to close the shop “is bittersweet because we have been here for over 100 years. We were the oldest independent shop in Uxbridge.”

Although the main reason for the closure is the owner’s retirement, Bovilles said on Facebook: “We had hoped that the business would carry on in one form or another, but it didn’t work out that way. We notice that many of you have speculated about the effect of the internet or the cost of high street rent and rates. These are not the main reasons for us closing, but they surely haven’t helped.”

The closure comes two years after the company’s other branch in Maidenhead had also closed permanently.

Mr. Wright has also noted a drop in younger people getting involved in art nowadays. He said that “you only have to look at art in schools. It has been cut back for many years and fewer young people follow it through as a career.”

Stuart Hughes, a customer of the shop, said on Facebook “I’ve been using Bovilles for nearly thirty years now. For some items, you need to see them in a shop rather than online, and I really don’t trust the post or couriers for things like mounting boards. It’ll be a shame to see them go.”

Another customer, Pagoda Parry, commented: “Ah, end of an era! So sad to hear this, but wishing all the staff the very best for the future.”

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