On Sophies first weekend back from Spain, we decided to organise our photography trip around our favourite café, regular readers will know we love The Rocking Horse Café up in the Alnwick area of Northumberland. Before lunch though we went to visit Barter Books on the outskirts of Alnwick town.
A l’il History Bit
Alnwick Railway Station is a Victorian building designed by William Bell and opened in 1887. In 1991, after the closure of the branch line to Alnwick 10 years before, it reopened as a second~hand book shop having been bought by Stuart and Mary Manley who also run it. 350,000 people a year come to visit it, 140,000 of those from outside the area according to Wiki, but that isn’t surprising, Alnwick isn’t THAT big! Anyway it’s one of the largest second-hand bookshops in Europe, and is notable for using a barter system (hence the name) whereby customers can exchange their books for credit against future purchases, but you can also just buy books like in a shop.
It’s also quite famous, as in 2000, the owner discovered a box of old books bought at auction and in it was a WW2 poster from 1939 that hadn’t seen the light of day until then. I see you wondering why that made it famous, doesn’t sound like much, but you might have seen what became of the poster.
On to some pictures I took inside
They have rare books in locked glass cupboards as they have had a robbery in the past.
After having a good old wander through the sections, we both purchased a couple of books each, and then we went off to Rock, for lunch at The Rocking Horse. Check out the menu, yum!
It’s a dog friendly café and there are 3 resident border collies.
After lunch we drove down the coast to Alnmouth an visited the Old Gun Battery Emplacement ruin, as you do, so stay tooned for next week!