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Funeral parlour running a book swap

PUBLISHED: 09:00 30 April 2010 | UPDATED: 09:38 01 August 2010

IF you want to pick up a copy of the latest bestseller you might head to your nearest bookshop or the library.

But now there is another place you might find that must-read tome - a funeral parlour.

IF you want to pick up a copy of the latest bestseller you might head to your nearest bookshop or the library.

But now there is another place you might find that must-read tome - a funeral parlour.

A book swap library service is being launched at six funeral homes across Norfolk and north Suffolk and eager readers will be pleased to learn that unlike a library there are no fines and you can keep a book if you like it.

The book swap is being run at Cossey Funeral Service's branches in Beccles and Bungay, Woolnough Funeral Service in Halesworth, Long Stratton and District Funeral Service and Rackham's Funeral Service's branches in Diss and Harleston.

The idea is the brainchild of Tanya Marwood, who manages the funeral homes, which are all part of Anglia Funeral Services.

Mrs Marwood said that people can keep the book for as long as they want, then bring it back and swap it for another or keep it.

“We do a lot for the community and wherever we can we try to help out. This is just another community role,” said Mrs Marwood.

“Anyone can walk in, have a chat and pick up a book. People can bring in a couple of books and maybe take three or four - that is fine. If they see something they really like they can keep it, they do not have to bring it back.”

Mrs Marwood said the idea for the book swap library service came from a previous job running a boarding kennels.

“I had a book about dog's names and people asked if they could borrow it,” she said.

“Customers starting bringing in and borrowing other books and it just seemed to happen. I thought about and thought we could try it here.”

If the scheme is a success it could be extended to other branches of Anglia Funeral Services.

Mrs Marwood started with just over 500 books sourced from car boot sales and other places, but thanks to the efforts of staff the six branches now have about 900.

They include a mixture of novels, factual, fiction, including Mills and Boon romances, and children's books.

There will be a collection box and people using the service can donate to Help for Heroes if they wish.

Mrs Marwood hopes that as the scheme progresses it may become mobile, taking books to local hospitals and residential homes.

She is appealing to anyone who has any large print books or braille books they no longer need to take them into the branches.

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