The two-day book fair, which has raised funds for Our Lady of Peace Catholic Church in Roxburgh for the past 29 years, is to cease, unless someone new can be found to run it.
Organisers Glen and Rod Dyson, of Roxburgh, have run the January book sale for the past two years, and for another 15 years before that, but are finding it too hard to handle the workload required.
Mr Dyson said organising the book sale usually took abouthalf a day to a day per week for most of the year.
“We work on it probably every week of the year,” he said.
“A lot of our parishioners don’t realise just how huge a commitment it is.
“We have an older parish – a lot are much older than us – and we just can’t get anybody.”
The money raised, usually between $3000 and $4000, went towards church bills.
He said every time they drove past the church they would check for boxes of books and magazines that had been dropped off.
The books would be moved to the church’s book room, then sorted by condition and topic, which took several hours a week.
They would be transported to the Teviot Union Church hall before the two-day sale, which usually took about 20 trailer-loads to move the 200 to 300 cartons.
Orchardist Con van der Voort volunteered his staff and a truck to help move the books.
They have a specialist who looks at some of the books they have selected to determine their value and they have had a few surprises, including a “scruffy, rugged” little booklet that he was going to throw out, which was valued at $200.
In addition to the book sale, they ran raffles, a white elephant stall and a cake stall.
“We will probably still run raffles and cake stalls as we have to do something to have the money coming in.”
One of the volunteers, Angela Compton, of Roxburgh, also spent a lot of time helping with the book stall.
She said Florence and Jim Breen, of Roxburgh, were the original organisers then Molly Middlemiss and then Neil Taylor took over.
Elizabeth Reid ran the white elephant stall, while Brian McLean and Stu Edgecombe organised the trestles.
“We want to thank the community for their generosity and all the people who helped,” she said.