Children’s Bookshops in the UK
"A town isn’t a town without a bookstore." Neil Gaiman
What makes a good bookshop?
Let's start with the obvious: In my opinion, a good bookshop must have an interesting collection of books- general and popular titles but also unique and quirky ones. Most people go to bookshops to find treasures that can't be easily found online! What else is important? I think that staff should be friendly, dedicated and, above all, knowledgeable. Furthermore, a children’s bookshop should have bright and inviting book displays! A few comfy seats are a must as they allow customers to have a read and some peace. Bookshops also provide a brilliant creative space for workshops, author events or birthday parties.
For me, bookshops are magical places that entice young readers to go on literary adventures. Bookshops are full of stories about great characters, strange worlds, friendships and life and those themes somehow also should be present in the bookshop.
Independent Bookshops are the future!
As Wee Bookworms has big plans 😉 , we have been exploring some of the children’s bookshops in the UK and thus we came up with this wonderful directory to some of the most beautiful ones.
In this list we are exploring UK-based bookshops that specialise in children’s literature! There will be another summary about Children’s Bookshops in Ireland and the USA, and a compilation about Bookshops in the UK that sell not only kid’s books but also adult fiction.
Family- run and thus independent 'Bags of Books' is a children's bookshop in Lewes (East Sussex) that has been around for over 20 years. It looks like a cosy little bookshop! By the way, the building the shop is in is over 400 years old.
This beautiful bookshop in London also has been around for a long time! I simply looove how quirky and inviting it looks- there is a hint of magic in the air! You could browse their broad selection of books for hours! Whether you are looking for a picture book or YA literature, this is the place to go to! Tamara McFarlane is the owner of Tales on Moon Lane and she wrote the popular book series 'Amazing Esme'. So while you are there, you should definitely get a signed copy!
What a fantastic name! I would love to know why they called it that. The Chicken And Frog Bookshop is located in Brentwood (Essex). This community-centred bookshop is run by a couple with a passion for children's books. A lovely little bookshop with fantastic staff and a great selection of books!
"A book is like an alligator's mouth-if you see one open you often end up disappearing inside." Lemony Snicket
You can find the 'Alligator's Mouth' in Richmond (Surrey). There is always something going on in this little gem of a bookshop! Even author Jacqueline Wilson and Axel Scheffler, the famous illustrator of the Gruffalo, have visited the shop before.
This gorgeous Children's Bookshop is located in London. There is lots happening all year round! Beside a great selection of children's books, they also offer workshops and host other events.
Smallprint Books is another wonderful children’s Bookstore in London. This shop was opened in 2015 and harbours countless beautifully illustrated children’s books. You might not find your standard title but rather more unique books. They also hold regular events and activities. A great wee Children’s Bookshop with a unique twist!
Leeds also has a fantastic children’s bookshop + café. Enjoy a lovely cup of cappuccino whilst being surrounded by beautiful books! They also offer regular Storytime Sessions and quirky events for the little ones.
You can find ‘The Book Nook’ in the seaside town of Hove! This award-winning bookstore was established in 2009 and has been going strong ever since. They have a fantastic range of books and super knowledgeable staff.
I visited this bookshop in Wigtown only a few months ago! Wigtown itself is a charming place (it’s Scotland official National Book Town) full of independent bookshops. Have you heard of the Book ‘The Diary of a Bookseller’? Well, The Book Shop is right beside Curly Tale Books!
Jayne Baldwin and Shalla Gray (both are published authors) bought the children's bookshop in 2015. Curly Tale Books is also an indie Publishing company; however, they are not accepting unsolicited submissions at the moment. It is a lovely little bookshop full of treasures for the little ones!
Unfortunately, I haven't had a chance to visit this one yet. It is said to have a fantastic range of books for children and teens and you might be able to get a free coffee and biscuit as well! NCBC is located in Norfolk's countryside- quite a unique setting!
I will always add more Children’s Bookshops to this list, so please check for updates! By the way, have you heard of our Trainee Wee Bookworms? A Wee Bookworms Book Club membership is the perfect gift for children!