8 of the best: independent bookshops in the Cotswolds

The Suffolk Anthology

The Suffolk Anthology - Credit: Archant

There is nothing better than curling up in a cosy arm chair with a good book and a hot cup of cocoa; so bookworms please look no further. We’ve accumulated a list of eight of the best independent bookshops in the Cotswolds to get your literary fix.

Cornell Books, High Street, Tewkesbury

If you adore the underlying mustiness of a timeworn book, this cosy medieval sanctuary is the perfect setting to while away an afternoon thumbing through their venerable collection. Described by its many fans as a ‘proper bookshop’, there are over 30,000 antiquarian and second-hand books to choose from, specialising in topics covering anything from topography and natural history to art and design.

Octavia’s Bookshop, Black Jack Street, Cirencester

Octavia is passionate about children’s literature and this devotion is reflected in the warm sentiment of her bookshop.

Previously awarded with the Bookseller’s ‘Best Independent Children’s Bookseller 2013’, Octavia’s Bookshop is a foolproof location to introduce your child to a world of papery heaven. And for the ‘grown-ups’, check out Octavia’s top 5 recommendations.

The Suffolk Anthology, Suffolk Parade, Cheltenham

If you are a booklover who craves the crisp white pages of a brand new hardback, the Suffolk Anthology has an abundance of fresh books covering a wide range of subjects from fiction and poetry to biography and travel.

The bookshop is continuously holding some fantastic events and workshops, and there is even a snug café where you can settle by the Victorian fireplace, tuck into coffee and homemade cake and bury your head in a good book.

The Anthology, Cheltenham

The Anthology, Cheltenham - Credit: Archant

Jaffé and Neale, Middle Row, Chipping Norton

A lifetime in the publishing industry combined with a strong focus on high-quality books and great customer service has proved to be the perfect recipe for an exceptional bookshop.

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Not only are there regular best-selling author events and a book club that involves wine, but you’ll also find a superb café upstairs where you can enjoy homemade Aga-baked cake and watch the bustling activity of Market Square pass you by.

Moss Books, Henrietta Street, Cheltenham

Wind your way through the piles of plays and poetry, history and fiction at Moss Books. A fixture on Henrietta Street for over 20 years, this book shop is a treasure trove of literary gems past and present.

The friendly staff will be on hand to help locate specific titles among the extensive selection that covers everything from art and the ancient world to motoring and music.

Peter Lyon’s Books, Imperial Square, Cheltenham

There’s something very magical, comforting and nostalgic about diving into children’s literature from the past, and you can discover a host of all your old favourites at Peter Lyons Books, situated opposite the Town Hall in Cheltenham. It’s a literature idyll where two worlds collide; outside is the 21st century while inside there’s lashings of ginger beer and adventures to immerse yourself in.

From paperbacks to mouth-wateringly expensive first additions with original colourful graphics, there is something for every budget and taste, and you can browse at your leisure, evoking memories of past treasures as you do.

A Festival of Books, Cambrook Court, Chipping Campden

This wonderful independent offers a warm welcome to literature lovers young and old. Aimed at younger readers, the shop specialises in unique and magical children’s books, although they do have an adult’s corner too!

Many author events and workshops regularly take place in store and there is even story telling and a family book club to enjoy.

The Stroud Bookshop, High Street, Stroud

This bookshop has been a permanent landmark on Stroud’s High Street for over 25 years now thanks to owner, Charles Tongue’s, knowledge, passion and love for his books.

Despite its cosy size, the bookshop is a cornucopia of higgledy-piggledy piles of novels ready for you to burrow into. And if you can’t find what you’re looking for, Charles will be on stand-by to make sure you leave the store with it safely tucked under your arm.

The Yellow-Lighted Bookshops, Tetbury & Nailsworth

These two, independently and lovingly run bookshops can be found in the Cotswold towns of Tetbury and Nailsworth. Inside, you'll find shelves upon shelves of books, all chosen to cater for the interests of the local communitiy.

Can't find what you're looking for? The Yellow-Lighted Bookshops can order almost any book within one to two days.