2.4.11

A proper bookshop



Above the door are ancient carved dragons. Peering down the narrow corridor, shelves of books beckon you down...



...and down. The entrance is just on the right. Mind your head as you go in, if you are tall.



Inside, a warm, bookish sanctuary, with a tempting little corridor leading off. Shall we look?



The front room, with leather comfy chair and heater. Browsers and dippers are very welcome here. As are buyers, of course




But don't settle, there is more to explore - back through the wood panelled passageway, to the tallest bookshelf you ever saw -


'Books to the ceiling,
Books to the sky,
My pile of books is a mile high.
How I love them! How I need them!
I'll have a long beard by the time I read them.'
(Arnold Lobel).



Further on and further in.




This is a shrine to books and book lovers. This is a warm, welcoming haven, with sofas and higgledy-piggledy piles of interest to lure you to 'bide a wee while' and immerse yourself in papery Heaven. Do take a seat.




Oh happy day, that such places still - just about - exist. A proper bookshop.



Cornell Books Ltd, The Wheatsheaf, 132 High Street, Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, GL20 5JR.

*The Wheatsheaf used to be a pub dating back to the 1500's and can be seen from the front here.*

30 comments:

Jane said...

We love this shop - as you say a proper bookshop. Tewkesbury's a lovely town isn't it, have you tried the 1471 deli?

Frances said...

Wow, Gretel, I would love to visit that bookshop, and thank you for that wonderfully winding way of introducing it to us.

I've never been to Tewesbury, either, and now have put it on my mental list of places I'd like to see. (If I actually wrote down all such places, I would now need a bookcase as tall as the one in your photo, just to hold all the travel wish notations.)

There used to be many wonderfully eccentric, or merely warm, welcoming and well-stocked, small bookshops in New York. Just about all of them have now been put out of business by Barnes & Noble, and now even B&N are closing some of their huge shops.

So many folks buy books on line now (guilty, myself) but there is nothing, nothing like a wonderfully long browse, and buy, from a book shop whose owners appreciate readers. I guess my anachronistic library serves that function for me now.

Once again, your post has gotten me thinking! xo

Dar said...

I never used to like to even open a book in my youth, because me reading skills were slow. Now I am enthralled with books and absolutely agree with you. Better a proper bookshop than a pub. If only England were not so far away...as I once again dream through your reality.
Thanks for sharing your wonderful spaces.
BlessYourHeartGretelParker

frayedattheedge said...

What a fabulous bookshop. I think you would need to send in a search party to get me out again!!

elizabeth said...

This looks absolute bliss!
I haven't been to Tewksbury for neigh on 50 years (really and truly!) I was a t school near there.
So glad you are in contact with Bee who is such a wonderful person and mother and book lover
also Frances who I saw last week.
Hope spring is mild and marvellous for you.

jfidz said...

What a wonderful, magical place. If only every child could be taken there!

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

Oh to be in that fat leather chair for the entire afternoon!!

Julia Kelly said...

I know where I would be today- if I lived a tad closer!

jamjar said...

Wonderful! just the place to spend some time on a quiet Saturday.

djanderson said...

I'm going to teach my kids that poem!

Dartford Warbler said...

What a wonderful bookshop . I would be tempted to move in....

Jill said...

What a heavenly place, a wonderful spot - let's hope it does plenty of business in these difficult times.

Claire said...

Oh my, what a wonderful place and the front alone would lure me in Gretel.
Think I would need a bag of breadcrumbs, to leave a little trail so I wouldn't get lost..........
How nice to have such wonderful places to visit. Full of atmosphere, comfy chairs, beautiful books and more.

Did you buy any books?

Enjoy your weekend,

Claire :)

veryberryhandmade said...

Lovely book shop! Other half & I often regret the demise the loss of the brilliant bookshop that we used to have here in our home town. We're trying to buy less online (from you know who) and support local book shops now.

ellen said...

Dearest Gretel,
I am short enough to fit in, tho. I will be very careful and mind my sticky hands.
Arnold Lobel has always and forever been a favorite of mine.
These photos and words almost make me weep with pleasure and wantingnes to be there. What a treasure.
Love, e.

ellen said...

Well, it was supposed to be "wantingness" which I know is not a proper word. However, I like the sound of it and it does describe my feelings.

Caroline B said...

If I went in there you'd never see me again! What an amazing shop.

Magpie Magic said...

Wow! Do they take permanent residents? The poem seems like it's been written with me in mind. You rarely see me without at least one book on the go (make that never!) and I could spend days in a shop like that. Looks like pure heaven... xoxoxo

Trailshome said...

Thank you for sharing another view of your special world. Just imagine all of us booklovers from all over the world walking with you as you explore that cozy corner of it. Your words and pictures make it so clear for us to join you on your explores. Thank you for yet another peek into something precious and lovely.

Tonia said...

Absolutely my most favourite bookshop in the entire world, I love this place! Mornings in Tewkesbury are spent in here, a trip to the abbey to crick my neck staring at the ceiling and then a stop at the 1471 deli to stock up for lunch. Am so lucky to live so close to this great little town!

Chrissie said...

What a treat to spend some time in this heavenly spot - thank you for the virtual tour Gretel.

Gerry Snape said...

That is what I call...a scrumptious book shop...no other word for it. Great post!

Jessie said...

Thanks Gretel, I shall certainly seek it out when next in Tewkwsbury! :)x

Jessie said...

umm...that's Tewkesbury! (typo!)x

rossichka said...

Dear Gretel, when I looked through all the photos, I exclaimed:" Oh, how I wish to be there!!!" After reading your eloquent text, leading us further and further into this labyrinth of stories and wisdom, emotions and secrets, hidden between the pages of the books, I just sighed with relief, that there're still such places, revealing people the happiness of reading. All the spaces are so cosy! It must be very exciting to spend some time there and to feel the atmosphere! Thank you!!

janet said...

Dear Gretel,
What a simply magical place!

Claire is right..I would also need to leave a trail of breadcrumbs to help find my way out.

Do they allow you to pack a lunch and stay all day?

Thank you for the lovely tour...how long were you in that wondrous place?

Janet xox

Lrc said...

Oh my it makes me ache to go there! I love a proper book shop and try to patronize the ones left in our town. I love all of the sizes of the bookshelves and have a small one that is especially for housing my grandmother's old books. She had a special book shelf in the bathroom devoted to books of the perfect length while in the toilet. She was a writer herself--Elizabeth Berridge--check her out some time.

Bee said...

I might have to make a special trip to Tewkesbury just to visit this bookshop. It looks heavenly -- and the very opposite of mass-market.

Caroline Cornell said...

Gosh, what a lovely post and wonderful comments. The bookshop belongs to me and my husband and we live above the shop with our three children (you may have seen their wellies and walking boots lined up in the corridor). We have had this shop for about seven years (we had another bookshop elsewhere in Tewkesbury for several years before that)and feel very lucky to live and work in such a special building and beautiful town. We believe very strongly that a second-hand bookshop is not just about the stock, but about atmosphere, charm and individual service. We are so glad that customers seem to love our shop.

Caroline

jamsandwich said...

I used to drink at the Wheatsheaf when I was doing my degree in Cheltenham and little while (cough, cough) ago. Many a good night was had there. It makes a beautiful bookshop.