The late Gerry Mosdell.

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Gerry achieved 60 years in the out-of-print and second-hand book trade, opening his first shop in Barnstaple in 1964.

Gerry’s proudest achievement was having founded the PBFA, opening the door to bookselling and book-collecting to thousands of people around the country.

In the early 1970s, the book fair, ubiquitous now, was a new concept. Gerry and the original eight PBFA sellers were clear that books - and the ability to own books - should come to people wherever they were, not just in the cities and academic centres.

This was, of course, long before the internet, when Amazon, Abebooks and Biblio were not even dreams.

By 1974, at York, still a lynch pin event for the association, they were having to close the doors, so many people were trying to get in to the venues.

The association is celebrating its half-century this year and current PBFA chairman John Morten reflected on the journey from those eight original members to the professional association it is today, with over 400 members supported by a staffed office.

The association offers nearly 50 well-respected fairs each year plus a quarterly online fair. The PBFA also supports Listening Books and has run successful appeals, for example, to save the Opie Collection of Children’s Literature for the Bodleian Library.

Latterly, Gerry kept a bookshop in Llandudno Junction with Glenda, his wife of 32 years, also a longstanding bookseller. Glenda was the widow of another early PBFA member, Derek Wallis, who had died young and suddenly.

As self-confessed soul-mates, they achieved the happy circumstance of melding the two families of offspring into one big happy group, all of whom spoke warmly and appreciatively of Gerry at his non-religious funeral. Gerry’s talent was for “spotting spaces to be opened and filled with life, warmth and possibility”.

Another success was the saving of Barnstaple’s Pannier Market, also still a vibrant going concern.

Glenda can be contacted at the Junction Bookshop, Llandudno Junction, Conwy or through