Book Warren Cafe ready for Bookshop Day
With UK Bookshop Day coming up on Saturday, the Book Warren Café in Willingham is ready to welcome new and existing book fans.
“We reopened on September 1. We’ve changed the layout to accommodate Covid regulations and in fact have changed twice more since as the regulations have been updated,” says manager Claire Thorby. “There’s more space to browse, and it’s been busy, if erratic.”
New measures include quarantining – for books.
“If a book is picked up but not sold it’s quarantined for 72 hours,” says Claire, who is looking forward to Saturday.
“The books are a real eye-opener. What I love is people bringing books to the till and it’s amazing the diversity. They’re not expensive – often £3 or £4 – and we also have a vintage selection, which is a great conversation starter.”
The café part of the premises now has a new chef and coffee machine.
“We now have specials every day, with seating for 34 – eight tables that seat six – with specials every day on the menu, it’s homemade good, and cakes from the local patisserie.”
Next month the Book Warren will become part of bookshop.org, a new way of buying any book and have it delivered to your home.
“It enables you to go through the Book Warren to buy your book, so we can buy any book and arrange home delivery,” explains Book Warren founder Lindsay Warren.
This means that independent booksellers will no longer be on the back foot when it comes to competing for a fair share of the online trade.
“It means we can compete with the likes of Amazon,” adds Lindsay. “And all independent bookshops will be able to do that. Book retailers have been getting upset about massive discounts being given to the distribution giants, and now they can set up on their own. It’s astonishing what the platform will do for people like us, because for independents there’s no easy way of setting up an online catalogue.”