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These kid-friendly bookshops are the perfect place to inspire and amuse young readers; they’re jam-packed with brilliant characters, tall tales and wonderful stories. From award-winning independents to dedicated children’s stores, they're the perfect place to get lost in a book together.
Bags of Books, Lewes
Located in a charming 16th century building, Bags of Books looks like it’s straight from a classic story – it’s an adventure inside and out. This is an independent bookshop that specialises in children’s books and sets out to appeal to those inquisitive young minds. There are bright displays to help you choose your next read, from cloth books for babies, to thrillers for teens. There’s something for everyone in this community-driven store.
1 South St, Lewes, East Sussex BN7 2BT
Tales on Moon Lane, Herne Hill
The gorgeous Tales on Moon Lane is a dedicated children’s bookshop with staff who just love kids books. The store runs regular events, including immersive story time and phonics sessions, which are interactive and multi-sensory – so little readers will soak them up! Sitting in the heart of Herne Hill, the shop is bright, fun and instantly welcoming - they even have a storytelling cabin, the perfect place to get lost in any new finds.
25 Half Moon Lane, Herne Hill, London, SE24 9JU
Simply Books, Bramhall
The multi-award winning Simply Books is located in the Cheshire market town of Bramhall. The shop hosts great kid’s events and regular groups, including a monthly baby book club and lots of book clubs for children and young readers. The enchanting cafe is Alice in Wonderland themed with special touches, serving delicious tea party style cakes. As an added bonus there are plenty of kid-friendly activities too, which are bound to keep any fidgety little hands busy.
228 Moss Lane, Bramhall, Cheshire SK7 1BD
The Edinburgh Bookshop, Edinburgh
Shortlisted for the Best Children’s Bookshop at the British Book Awards, The Edinburgh Bookshop is full of lovely reading nooks and spaces to immerse visitors in their newly chosen reads. They have weekly story time sessions, a fun ladder signed by visiting authors and a dedicated corner for children to grab a spot on the sofa - this is a child-friendly bookshop that families will just love.
219 Bruntsfield Place, Edinburgh EH10 4DH
Norfolk Children’s Book Centre, Norwich
Norfolk Children’s Book Centre is entirely dedicated to children’s books, with all the best books stocked in their spacious-but-cosy premises. Located in rural Norfolk, this is not your average high street store. There’s a vibrant gallery wall full of fun scribbles by well-known authors, a live-in cat, and plenty of space for kids to sit and delve into new books - it’s well worth the trip.
Wayside, Alby, Norwich, Norfolk NR11 7HB
Mr B’s Emporium is home to some of the most brilliant bookish decor ever seen - even the bathrooms are book-themed! The well-stocked children’s section lists its books by theme, so it’s easy to navigate and there’s plenty of space to browse. Twice named Independent Bookshop of the Year, they run loads of events for children and adults which feature brilliant authors and illustrators, such as past Children’s Laureate Chris Riddell.
14-15 John St, Bath BA1 2JL
Chiltern Bookshops, Chorleywood and Gerrard’s Cross
The two Chiltern Bookshops - in Chorleywood, Herts and Gerrard’s Cross, Bucks - are both packed to the rafters with great books including a wonderful children’s selection. But it’s their events that are the real selling point - Chorleywood Bookshop was instrumental in setting up the community’s now annual Children’s Literary Festival, and both bookshops host regular story time events.
Chorleywood: 4 New Parad, Chorleywood, Hertfordshire WD3 5NJ. Gerrards Cross: 12a Packhorse Road, Gerrards Cross, Buckinghamshire SL9 7QE
Chicken and Frog, Brentwood
The multi-coloured Chicken and Frog is Brentwood’s only independent children’s bookshop. The family-run business only stocks books for kids and is passionate about being a part of the local community. They run fun rhythm and rhyme sessions for tots and have events with authors all year round, all of which are free. Kids will love exploring the shelves and hand-picking a new favourite in this friendly store.
Security House, Ongar Rd, Brentwood CM15 9AT
Salts Mill Bookshop, Bradford
If you’re near Bradford and fancy a day out with some retail therapy thrown in, then Salts Mill is the place - and its bookshop is ideal for young readers. Salts Mill is an impressive slice of Victorian architecture now home to a variety of local businesses, including The Salts Mill Bookshop. The children’s section is beautifully decorated and warmly welcoming, not to mention absolutely huge, so plenty of room for buggies (and less chance of knocking over a carefully constructed display!).
Salts Mill, Victoria Road, Saltaire, West Yorkshire BD18 3LA
The Alligator’s Mouth, Richmond
The petite Alligator’s Mouth is an independent with a treasure trove of kid's books. Located amongst the quirky alley ways of Richmond in London, this boutique has every genre of books to inspire children to dive into a story. They’ve a rich heritage of brilliant children’s authors who have visited, included the renowned Jacqueline Wilson. The in-the-know booksellers here are just waiting to recommend you the perfect story.
2A Church Walk, Richmond, London TW9 1JL
Booka Bookshop, Shropshire
An award-winning independent, the Booka Bookshop and Cafe is wonderfully spacious and has a huge selection of children’s books. There’s regular book clubs, including two for children, one for teens and another for those who love YA. Booka also runs lots of fantastic kid's events geared towards encouraging a love of reading, so is perfect for any readers just finding their feet.
26- 28 Church Street, Oswestry, Shropshire SY11 2SP
Pickled Pepper books, Crouch End
Set in the charming Crouch End, Pickled Pepper Books is another specialist in kid’s books, with attached café and events space. The picturesque shop hosts a sackful of events for kids big and small, but the icing on the cake is their children’s parties, all themed with little readers in mind. Choose from Cowboys and Cowgirls, Pirates and Fairies, or under the sea – and embark on your very own story-filled adventure.
10 Middle Ln, Crouch End, London N8 8PL
Chepstow Bookshop, Chepstow
With its collection of eclectic independent shops, cafes and bars, St Mary’s Street - home to The Chepstow Bookshop - is rumoured to have provided J.K. Rowling with the inspiration for Harry Potter’s Diagon Alley. The Chepstow Bookshop has lots to offer young book readers, with its wide range of children’s book events and its cosy reading area, complete with beanbags and an excellent variety of books.
13 St Mary Street, Chepstow NP16 5EW
Storytellers Inc, St Anne’s
Run by a passionate mother and daughter duo in in the beautiful seaside town of St. Annes, Storytellers Inc was recently shortlisted for The Children’s Bookseller of the Year Award. With a dedicated children's room and a reading den for little readers to relax in, it is a wonderland for children. And with book club opportunities for all ages, from tots right through to tweens, it’s the perfect day tripper destination.
7 The Crescent, St Annes-on-Sea, Lancashire FY8 1SN
Octavia’s Bookshop, Cirencester
A previous winner of the Best Independent Children’s Bookseller Award, Octavia’s Bookshop is the result of the owner’s passion for books - something she is keen to pass on to young readers. With a huge variety of children’s books, plenty of comfortable chairs to browse on, and staff with a wealth of knowledge, this is a great place to nurture a love of books in even the most reluctant reader.
24 Black Jack Street, Cirencester GL7 2AA
The Book Nook, Hove
The wonderful seaside town of Hove hosts the perfectly formed Book Nook, an indie children’s bookshop that has won local awards. They have story time every day at 4pm and have lots of other events to get involved in such as regular book review competitions, author visits and face painting. It’s perfect for a leisurely weekend amble; why not go for a browse and then pick up some local rock afterwards.
1 St Johns Place, First Avenue, Hove BN3 2FJ
Bookworm Children’s Bookshop, Selkirk
Set in the Scottish Borders, Bookworm is small but perfectly formed. With eye catching décor, lots of fun bunting and characters everywhere, this independent shop will excite children of all ages and inspire them to pick up a book. There’s three story time sessions a week, and they run regular crafting sessions for kids who like to get a little bit hands on.
59 High Street,Selkirk, Scottish Borders TD74BZ
The Children’s Bookshop, Hay-On-Wye
With over twenty thousand books in this well-stocked shop, The Children’s Bookshop is what it says on the tin – a bookshop entirely for kids! This magical emporium is full of second hand wares, vintage finds and treasures just waiting to be discovered. It’s perfect for those who want to immerse themselves in some classics and well-loved tales - at a purse-friendly price!
Toll Cottage, Pontvaen, Hay on Wye, Herefordshire, HR3 5EW