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‘Support your local art shops!’ Store’s message to customers as it closes doors after 20 years

London Graphic Centre closes Fitzrovia branch

20 November, 2016 — By Alina Polianskaya

The sign on the door at the London Graphic Centre PIC: @kdsh7

ARTISTS were urged to support independent suppliers as a Fitzrovia store closed down with a poignant message left on the door.

The farewell sign etched in white paint on the doors of the London Graphic Centre in Tottenham Street told disappointed customers: “We would like to thank you for your kind support over the years, too many people to mention but you know who you are. Above all else, remember to support your local art shops, they are disappearing one by one. Keep creative.”

The shop has been trading for 20 years, supplying everything from paintbrushes to printer inks to artists. The LGC’s flagship branch in Shelton Street, Covent Garden, will continue to trade.

Its managing director Shona Peel said: “Sadly, sales at the store had been in decline for some years following significant shifts in the market place and the products used by designers who were the store’s traditional customers. We tried very hard to bring in new ranges to compensate for this shift but eventually the store was trading at a loss so the decision was taken to close it.”

She added: “For me personally this was very sad as the team at the store and I had tried very hard to reverse the declining sales but the small size of the store meant it wasn’t possible to get the growth we needed.”

Ms Peel recalled what the area was like when the shop opened in the 1990s: “At that time there were a lot of graphic design agencies in the Fitzrovia area including Saatchi’s. This was a period when the store was doing really well. Over the years these design businesses moved east towards Shoreditch so the demographic of the store’s customers changed significantly and the sales also started to decline significantly.”

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