AS THE county prepares for the hustle and bustle of Black Friday tomorrow, one Oxford bookshop is encouraging customers to make the most of the quiet life.
Blackwell’s, in Broad Street, will be taking part in Civilised Saturday, meant as an antithesis to the previous day’s shopping bonanza.
Throughout the day, customers will be able to experience the lighter and quieter side of shopping, with the store holding poetry readings for adults and children, and staff offering readers book recommendations.
There are also plans for a string quartet to play in the afternoon.
In the evening, author David Mitchell will be visiting to discuss his latest novel Slade House.
Deputy manager Zool Verjee said: “It is a nationwide initiative which is basically a tongue-in-cheek response to Black Friday, which is characterised by a lot of mayhem and noise.
“Civilised Saturday is a relaxed and composed experience where customers can come in and forget their troubles and we can make them feel as relaxed as possible.”
So far 100 bookshops around the UK have said they will be taking part in the day, a direct response to Friday’s sales – an American tradition where shops offer big discounts on products.
Away from Oxford, travel measures have been put in place to deal with the increased amount of shoppers expected at Bicester Village.
The town’s new park-and-ride, which is to be officially opened on Monday, will be in operation tomorrow to transfer shoppers between the bus station and the outlet shopping centre.
The £3.5m facility, which has 580 car parking spaces, has been built as part of a string of measures being paid for by Bicester Village to relieve traffic congestion.
Community relations director Miranda Markham said this weekend was “one of the busiest” of the year.
She added: “We have extended the opening hours of Bicester Village as part of a range of measures which we also use during the post-Christmas period, commencing on Boxing Day. “These did help spread the high visitor volumes last year over a longer period and reduced congestion at peak times.’’