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Building supply store will close

Ayers Building and Supply Co. Inc. — a business well-known to many across the Heart of Virginia — is set to close its doors.

Co-owner Beverly Ayers said the store would remain open during the summer, noting there wasn’t a definite time frame for closure.

“It’s been a family business and we have three children,” Beverly said. “Two of them are already working somewhere else in careers of their own, and Scott is working here. He’s our eldest son, and he’s been here since he was 15 (years old) working in the summers.”

She said Scott had been building houses before he came and worked in the store. 

“That’s not what he wants; he wants to run a gun shop,” Beverly said. “So for the past six or seven years, we’ve been selling guns, and he’s just done wonderful with the guns and he loves it.”

She said, unlike the past, the business hasn’t built houses for a couple years.

“We just decided it’s time for us to retire and let him follow his dream,” Beverly said of Scott.

She said Bruce Dunn, Lynn’s brother-in-law, who is part owner, retired and that his children have careers of their own as well.

“Nobody really wants to run the family business,” Beverly said.

“We’re not real sure at this point how long — or if — Scott will remain here at the store,” said co-owner Lynn Ayers, Beverly’s husband, regarding whether their son Scott would open up a gun shop in the existing business’ building.

Beverly said Scott would remain in the building for a while, but would probably relocate somewhere within Farmville.

Ayers currently has eight employees, different from how many employees they’ve had historically.

“At one time we had 20-some employees,” Beverly said. “When we were building houses … we had a full framing crew and a full finish crew and a paint crew.”

Lynn Ayers’ parents opened the store in 1948.

“His parents started it; Lynn’s father and his grandfather were builders … in Virginia Beach during World War II,” Beverly said. “When they came back here, they said they were still going to build, and his mother said, ‘Well, I want a building supply.”

Beverly said the store was small until they moved to the current space on North Main Street in about 1971.

She said the business has sold all types of building supplies “from A to Z,” including lumber, blocks, brick, molding, windows, doors, shingles and metal roofing.

“In the showroom we’ve sold all types of hardware,” Beverly said.

She said the store would make an announcement to the community when a set date is agreed upon for the closing of the store.