Scrivener’s Books & Bookbinding in BuxtonSara Jaspan, Exhibitions Editor
Book lovers, look no further. Scrivener’s is an Aladdin’s Cave for anyone who enjoys whiling the hours away browsing shelves in search of their next great read, or stumbling across rare antiquarian finds. Included in the Guardian’s top 10 second-hand bookshops in the UK, this national gem located in a former Victorian shop has a quintessential, old-worldly charm. Don’t be fooled by its humble outward appearance, however. Inside awaits five floors brimming with over 40,000 books, from good-as-new popular print to hard-to-find editions and unusual collectable items. The expansive range of genres includes art, architecture, history, sci-fi, children’s fiction, graphic novels and comics, biographies, plays and poetry, the classics, typography, ‘all the ologies’, and travel – plus a selection of greeting cards, maps and sheet music.
Browsing is encouraged and a set of comfy sofas furnished with tea and coffee facilities on the first floor makes the activity all the more pleasurable. Upon entering, make sure to take in the traditional bookbinders’ workshop on the ground level – where old books are restored and new ones made to order – before heading all the way up to the attic, or down to the old kitchen cellar where a tiny Victorian Museum (stocked with Victorian books) can be found. Scrivener’s is also a performance space with its own resident theatre company, and hosts regular events including book signings by local and visiting authors. Meanwhile, its Staircase Gallery offers a changing programme of exhibitions featuring works for sale by local artists; and Buxton’s drop-in storytelling group meets in the shop every second Sunday of the month (2-3.30pm), if you fancy listening to a tale or sharing one of your own.
This is a supremely warm and friendly bookshop that welcomes kids (look out for the resident tiger!) and those of all interests. Should you happen to be in Buxton on a rainy afternoon, we guarantee you’ll find no better place to be.