Russell Books has achieved a new world record for stacking the most Guinness World Records books. The tower had to be at least six metres tall to make the cut. The local book store completed the feat in its new Fort Street location, located across the street from the multi-unit storefront it called home for three decades. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)

Russell Books has achieved a new world record for stacking the most Guinness World Records books. The tower had to be at least six metres tall to make the cut. The local book store completed the feat in its new Fort Street location, located across the street from the multi-unit storefront it called home for three decades. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)

Russell Books marks opening of new location by setting Guinness World Record

Store stacks world record books more than six metres high

A hushed crowd watched with anticipation as hundreds of Guinness World Records books were slowly stacked atop one another in the new Russell Books location Thursday afternoon.

The iconic local book store has nearly completed its biggest move in three decades – transporting hundreds, if not thousands, of books from its previous, 12,000-square-foot store across the street to its new multi-level, 18,000-square-foot facility at 747 Fort St.

READ ALSO: Downtown Victoria’s Russell Books moving next door

“It’s a work in progress. It’s a huge move but we’re so lucky that it’s just across the street,” said co-owner Andrea Minter, who’s worked at the original Fort Street location since she was 13 years old. “It is a bit bittersweet because it was a great location and I love it … We had such a great experience there, I have so many strong memories.

“But this is amazing. We’re moving into a space that’s bigger, better, [has] more air, more light, better accessibility throughout the building [and] the ability to hold more books.”

Onlookers watch as more books are placed atop the world record-setting tower of Guinness World Records books at the new Russell Books location Thursday evening. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)

The book store has strong family ties for Minter, whose grandfather opened the first Russell Books in the ’60s. Minter’s mother painted a colourful mural near the escalators depicting the silhouette of a young girl reading against a tree. The girl is a representation of Minter’s daughters, who now help her run the store.

“If [my grandfather] were here today I’m sure he would be grinning from ear to ear,” she said.

The move is expected to be completed in the coming weeks, but for now, both locations are open for business, a decision pushed ahead in order to open the new store in time for Guinness World Record attempt.

READ ALSO: Victoria book store begins challenge of moving 500,000 books

The book stacking record is a new category, explained Guinness World Records adjudicator Phillip Robertson, but Russell Books must stack the books higher than six metres.

“They’ve got approximately a thousand books they are building into a stack now, once it reaches that six metres, it needs to stand for 10 seconds,” he explained. “If it collapses during that time the record will not stand.”

Robertson said one unforeseen challenge was that the Guinness books – which were donated by community members – were stored in varying conditions, some in dry places that cause pages to thin and crumble, and others in humid places that caused swelling.

“Every architect will tell you they don’t like the word variance, and there’s a lot of variance in books,” Robertson said. “I would encourage them to go as slow as they can.”

By 6:30 p.m. Russell Books had made history, sealing the deal with the tallest stack of Guinness World Records books in the Guinness Book of World Records.

READ ALSO: Victoria book store still collecting books from public as it aims for world record



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

(Google Maps)
Sophisticated glass-removal crime returns to downtown Victoria

Several businesses on Fort Street targeted overnight, say police

(File - Sooke News Mirror)
Man exposes himself to woman, children on Sooke trail

Suspect believed to be between 55 and 65 years of age

Johnathan Lee Robichaud pleaded guilty to eight charges including sex-related offences against children and accessing, possessing and making or publishing child pornography. (Courtesy of Saanich Police)
Sentencing date moved for Saanich nanny guilty of child porn charges

Johnathon Lee Robichaud pleaded guilty to eight sex offences against children

(Pixabay photo)
Emergency sewer repairs underway on Phillips Road in Sooke

Sewage may have entered DeMamiel Creek and Sooke River

Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry head for the press theatre at the B.C. legislature for an update on COVID-19, Jan. 7, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 spread steady with 509 new cases Friday

Hospitalized and critical care cases decline, nine deaths

Seasonal influenza vaccine is administered starting each fall in B.C. and around the world. (Langley Advance Times)
After 30,000 tests, influenza virually nowhere to be found in B.C.

COVID-19 precautions have eliminated seasonal infection

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau listens to a question during a news conference outside Rideau cottage in Ottawa, Friday, January 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau says Canada’s COVID vaccine plan on track despite Pfizer cutting back deliveries

Canadian officials say country will still likely receive four million doses by the end of March

Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon shared a handwritten note his son received on Jan. 13, 2021. (Ravi Kahlon/Twitter)
Proud dad moment: B.C. minister’s son, 10, receives handwritten note for act of kindness

North Delta MLA took to Twitter to share a letter his son received from a new kid at school

Lilly and Poppy, two cats owned by Kalmar Cat Hotel ownder Donna Goodenough, both have cerebellAr hypoplasia, a genetic neurological condition that affects their ability to control their muscles and bones. Photo by Alistair Taylor – Campbell River Mirror
VIDEO: Wobbly Cats a riot of flailing legs and paws but bundles of love and joy to their owner

Woman urges others to not fear adopting cats with disabilities

Dr. Shannon Waters, the medical health officer for the Cowichan Valley Region, is reminding people to stay the course with COVID-19 measures. (File photo)
‘Stay the course’ with COVID measures, Island Health reminds

Limit social activity, wash hands, wear a mask, and isolate if you feel sick

Cowichan Tribes members line up at a drive-up clinic on Wednesday, Jan. 13 to receive the first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in the region. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
BCAFN condems racism against Cowichan Tribes after COVID-19 outbreak

“Any one of us could do everything right and still catch the virus”: Regional Chief Terry Teegee.

Chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam provides an update on the COVID-19 pandemic in Ottawa on Friday, Jan. 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada’s top doctor says to avoid non-essential travel as B.C. explores legal options

Premier John Horgan says he is seeking legal advice on whether it can limit interprovincial travel

The District reopened access to the Sooke Potholes on Friday. (Contributed - Ashley Ensor)
Sooke Potholes reopen after storm

The park was closed on Wednesday after down power lines

Most Read