Secondhand and Antiquarian Bookshops in the UK and Republic of Ireland

Dylans Mobile Bookstore has closed
Stella Books has merged with Rose's Books late of Hay-on-Wye, as Stella and Rose's Books
Abergavenny Flea Market no longer has regular book stalls
Serendipity of Chepstow closed in 2017
New Tenovus Cancer Care charity shop in Cardiff

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Open at advertised times   Open at advertised times
Phone before travelling   Phone before travelling
Appointment necessary   Appointment necessary
Status unknown, update requested Status unknown, update requested

We do our best to make sure these details are correct and up-to-date. However we recommend that you contact bookshops before making a special journey.

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Bear Island/CARDIFF/Stalls 178-180
Bear Island  Open at advertised times
Stalls 178-180  Central Market   CARDIFF   CF10 1AU
tel: 02920 388631 
Open:  Monday - Saturday - 8.00 - 5.30.
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Very good range of stock, pretty good layout, reasonable prices. Found this by accident wandering round market, was one of the best bookshops in the city, well worth a visit.  The Wanderer 30.10.09
Has possibly changed since the above review. Now all paperbacks with piles of SF and Commando magazines. NWAD.  Chris Harte 19.11.12
Have visited for the last 7 years. A fair selection considering its size but doesn't have a lot of new stock or newer books. doesn't accept hardbacks.  Candy 19.01.13
Chris Harte's review is accurate. I first visited this charming, quirky little bookstall in Cardiff Market back in 2005. I can confirm it has always sold just paperbacks, comics, romance and SF etc. Worth a visit, dependent on the visitor's interest.  Richard 06.08.14

Bijou Bookshop/CARDIFF/The Pumping Station Penarth Rd
Bijou Bookshop   Open at advertised times
The Pumping Station Penarth Rd  CARDIFF  CF11 8TT
tel:  07877 109128  e-mail   web  
Open:  Monday - Sunday 11.00 - 5.00
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Bijou Books specialise in antique and vintage books that cover from classics to history to general interest. We have a range of Folio Society books from the 1950s to the modern day, as well as rare books that date to the early 1800s. We are bookworms and want to share our passion with the world. We are small (and bijou) but we have hopefully a lot to offer too.

Book Station/ABERDARE/13 Duke Street
The Book Station    Phone before travelling
13 Duke Street    ABERDARE  CF44 7ED
Open: Monday - Tuesday. Thursday - Saturday, 9.30 - 2.00 but may vary
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Currently staffed by a volunteer.

Unfortunately, I went on a Wednesday, the day it is closed! Looks to be a fair amount of books inside, and alongside the Bus Station so very easy to find too.  Steve Newman 12.08.19
The shop was staffed by a pleasant man who showed me round a cluttered shop. The stock is very strong on fiction which makes up about three-quarters of the shelf space. 'Celebrity' (sic) hardbacks abound and there is a good military section. There are a few children's books of which I purchased one along with an authors' yearbook (and only because it had my name in it).  Chris Harte 14.08.21
Another visit. However, virtually the whole shop is now shelves and piles of paperback fiction. I counted less than twenty hardback books.  Chris 06.05.23

Broadleaf Books   /ABERGAVENNY/16 Monk Street  
Broadleaf Books     Open at advertised times
16 Monk Street    ABERGAVENNY  NP7 5NP
tel:  01873 857127  e-mail   web
Open:  Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday & Saturday 10.00 - 4.00.
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About 10,000 books on local history, natural history and just plain history. Photography, architecture and art along with cooking and gardening as well as much more high quality interesting stock. Always welcome to visit in this historic market town. Books are bought as well as sold.

Broadleaf traded for over five years in Blaenafon and has now moved to Abergavenny.  TBG 23.06.09
I was completely surprised today in Abergavenny to find a fantastic cookery section filled with classics, ethnographic cookbooks, food histories, natural and wild food, foraging - basically, so many gorgeous, interesting and well-priced books I had never seen. I could not resist buying three books, and wanted many more. I also left with a title in mind to look up on Amazon, and I told the proprietor this, and she so kindly found the best on-line price for me and matched it, so I bought a fourth one. AND she was really nice to my children who were embarrassingly misbehaved.  Annie Levy 17.08.10
Finally found it. Superb shop with good quality books, extensive collections including for me Wales, Art and Biography. Great proprietor. Well worth a detour.  Norman Davies 08.05.12
A bookshop as bookshops should be (with that classic book scent that can't be found anywhere else). One to lose yourself in and stumble upon something unexpected but wonderful, as has happened to me many times. Covering fact and fiction, new and old, and always a pleasure to venture into.  Linus Harrison 18.07.12
A particularly good bookshop. Excellent stock at reasonable prices and attractively laid out. Parking nearby. Well worth a detour.  The Drifter 14.08.13
As stated above, a charming lady owner who was only too willing to help me find books of my interests. A good local and regional section behind the front door otherwise a nice place for just browsing and finding the odd treasure.  Chris Harte 28.08.13
What a knockout. 9/10.  The Boxer 26.09.13
Over five years since my last report and I really enjoyed my time in the shop. Plenty of chatter but also space to check the holdings which were perfectly categorised.  Chris Harte 23.11.18
It really is a pleasure to enter a shop in which everything is categorised in a tidy way for easy inspection. There is no speciality although I did mention during my visit that some scarce books on the shelves would walk if listed on the internet. The bargain section outside the shop contained two gems for me which I added to my other purchases. A pleasant way to spend an afternoon hour.  Christopher Harte 18.09.21
Very much agree with Chris Harte's comments above. This smallish two-room shop is full of neatly arranged shelves covering a wide range of genres, including an interesting selection of Welsh and local interest titles. It was my bad luck to visit on a market day in the school holidays when traffic congestion seemed at its worst!  Wessexman 12.04.22

Capital Bookshop/CARDIFF/Jacob_s Antiques Market
Capital Bookshop  Open at advertised times
Jacob's Antiques Market  West Canal Wharf   CARDIFF   CF10 5DB
tel: 07708 043866  web 
Open:  Thursday, Friday & Saturday 9.00 - 5.00.
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It's a bit of a hidden gem - go to the bottom (southern) end of St. Mary's Street ( train station end rather than Cardiff Castle end). Look across the road to see the restaurant Viva Brazil. Go down the left-hand side of Viva Brazil and under the railway bridge, Jacobs Antiques Market is in an old red brick warehouse and Capital bookshops stand is on the 2nd floor.  julia 12.02.18
I was quite taken aback at the quality of the books found on this second-floor area. The owner, Andrew, who used to have a shop in Morgan's Arcade has kept the high standard he enjoyed for many years. Although the stock is general it is well categorised and easy to check. I spent much longer than anticipated here and, fortunately, had my wheely-bag to take all of my purchases back to the car. WWAD.  Chris Harte 15.08.21

Jeff Towns/SWANSEA/Dylans Bookstore (The Newton Bookroom)
Jeff Towns  Appointment necessary
Dylans Bookstore (The Newton Bookroom)  5 Summerland Lane  Newton   SWANSEA   SA3 4UJ
tel: 01792 655255   e-mail  web 
Open:  By appointment only
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We sell books on Art, Poetry, Literature, History & Travel. Specialising in Wales & Dylan Thomas.

Oxfam Bookshop/CARDIFF/36 St Mary Street
Oxfam Bookshop  Phone before travelling
36 St Mary Street   CARDIFF   CF10 1AD
tel: 029 20 222275  web 
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General stock which must have been supplied from a central depot as all categories were uniform and just fitted into the right shelves. Nothing of value.  Chris Harte 03.09.09
Regarding your reviewer's comments - I volunteer here and our books are not centrally sourced. We collect direct from donors' homes in Cardiff and only sell good quality books.  marg.wat 04.09.09
I was surprised at the wide range of books and once you get away from the general paperbacks, prices were very reasonable. I actually liked the shop and even found the staff friendly. (now there is a novelty for me, praise for an Oxfam shop)  The Wanderer 30.10.09
Suffers from Oxfam overpricing of good books but this is definitely a better than usual Oxfam with a much better selection of non-fiction than most.  Norman Davies 08.05.12
Very overpriced and with little of interest. Not worth a detour.  The Drifter 14.08.13
Gatekeeper. 1/10.  The Boxer 17.09.13
Although I stick to my view of ten years ago about the books coming from a central depot what was on the shelves were well worthy of perusal. The books were well categorised and easy to reach. Prices were somewhat above the norm but this is a good Oxfam bookshop.  Chris Harte 29.04.19
Little has changed from my previous report. Books are still neatly laid out on the shelves and the shop lighting is good enough to easily read the titles. Very general stock with nothing outstanding.  Chris Harte 15.08.21

Oxfam Shop/SWANSEA/34 Castle Street
Oxfam Shop  Phone before travelling
34 Castle Street   SWANSEA   SA1 1HZ
tel: 01792 654710  web 
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This was a surprise. Not only has it got a large section on local and regional interests but the antiquarian section, although not large, had a few decent publications on the shelves. I purchased two bags worth of nineteenth century books, a rarity for me from a charity outlet.  Chris Harte 19.09.12
A good example of an Oxfam bookshop. Busy on the day I visited but one of the members of staff was still going the extra mile to help a customer find an obscure title. I do not have a complaint against the shop but it is a sad reflection that this is now the best secondhand bookshop in Swansea.  Steven Whitehead 10.01.13
Two and a half years since my last visit and little has changed. Overpricing of stock is an understatement. Fortunately I could turn off my hearing-aid as the volume of the music (sic) being played was extremely high. Good Welsh stock, as should be expected, with the occasional little gem being noticed. I would have purchased a number of titles but why pay £9.95 for books available at 60p plus £1.80 postage on abebooks?  Chris Harte 07.04.15
This is a bookshop which can one day produce nothing and the next is full of fascinating titles. The surrounding area is not conducive to intellectual life (it's mainly wine bars and nightclubs) but the titles available, very often on Welsh history, can be quite fascinating. You can take a gamble when visiting this charity shop: it could be bad or very good. Who knows!  Chris Harte 15.08.21

St. Mary_s Collectables/CHEPSTOW/23 St. Mary_s Street
St. Mary's Collectables  Open at advertised times
23 St. Mary's Street   CHEPSTOW   NP16 5EU
tel: 01291 622299   e-mail 
Open:  Monday - Saturday 9.00 - 5.00.
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Although this shop has much in the way of "collectables" it actually has a fairly large offering of books, many of which are of a surprisingly good quality. The shelves behind the entrance are floor to ceiling with local/regional history and culture books with another block of shelving displaying titles circa 1890-1920. It's worth a visit, as is the coffee shop next door.  Chris Harte 04.08.10
It very much depends on what you call a large offering. I found a few interesting titles but it isn't worth making the long drive for a couple of bookshelves and a small handful of purchases.  Nicholas Pendower 05.04.14
To me a standard antiques centre with nothing that jumped out at me. But good vintage postcard sellers.  Norman Davies 08.04.17
Although mainly an antiques centre there are quite a number of bookshelves which, I was told, are stocked by a local dealer who works from home. For a shop such as this the quality and variety of the selection is quite good especially for rare local history booklets.  Chris Harte 27.02.22

Stella and Rose_s Books/TINTERN/Monmouth Road
Stella and Rose's Books    Phone before travelling
Monmouth Road    TINTERN  NP16 6SE
tel:  01291 689755  e-mail   web  
Open: Monday - Sunday 10.00 - 4.00
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Stella Books has merged with Rose's Books late of Hay-on-Wye. A large stock of 30,000 books on all subjects, specialising in children's and illustrated, UK topography, railways and natural history. Currently online only, please check for reopening.

A lovely bookshop in a superb setting. Quality titles all over the place and a visit is highly recommended. There is nothing to criticise regarding the shop itself although I do have considerable reservations about their on-line selling and the carelessness in book descriptions. Attention to detail is paramount and needs consideration.  Chris Harte 19.04.11
Lovely location with distracting view of Tintern Abbey. Interesting stock sorted by budget. Books may all be on-line but browsing adds new interests.  Simon Procter 14.05.11
If you are daft enough to pay these sort of prices then this is the place for you. The shop appears to act as a storage facility for their internet book selling business, which means that prices are well in excess of those you would expect to pay in any provincial bookshop (even the most expensive ones). This is not a place for the passing trade, and if you are thinking of making a special trip make sure that you've organised a bank loan before you go. After seeing their advertising I arrived in optimistic mood but left feeling annoyed that I had been hoodwinked into such a costly and time consuming drive.  Nicholas Pendower 05.04.14

Tenovus/CARDIFF/43 Whitchurch Road, Heath
Tenovus  Phone before travelling
43 Whitchurch Road, Heath   CARDIFF  CF14 3JN
tel:  02920 619976    web
Open: ring to check
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A charity shop of high standard: books are a notable proportion of stock - fiction, history, sport and biography feature. A small number of older, collectible/antiquarian upon request.

Troutmark Books/CARDIFF/39-43 Castle Arcade
Troutmark Books      Open at advertised times
39-43 Castle Arcade    CARDIFF  CF10 1BW
tel:  029 203 82814  e-mail   web
Open: Monday - Saturday 10.00 - 5.15, Sunday 11.15 - 4.00
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Tucked just inside an arcade opposite Cardiff Castle, this is the largest (and I think the cosiest) second hand bookshop in Cardiff. Three floors offer a good coverage of all topics. Books are in good condition, well presented and include a good proportion of recent publications, Troutmark is especially strong on modern literature and dedicates its top floor to science fiction/ pulp magazines/ephemera and comics.  George Marshall 26.02.09
Many books over three floors. Huge number of paperbacks; lots of science-fiction; boxes of magazines but very little material pre-1960. Good for the general reader.  Chris Harte 03.09.09
Lovely shop, very well laid out and large stock. Sadly though I found them to be rather overpriced with very few affordable collectables. Should have listened to Chris Harte.  The Wanderer 30.10.09
Great shop, with a top floor devoted to Sci-fi and comics. Reasonable prices.  Iain Baille 22.11.10
I like this, it is a good old fashioned s/h bookshop with books crammed in but ordered. I found prices sensible.  Norman Davies 08.05.12
A very large selection of books, well laid out and probably the largest second hand book shop in Cardiff. I looked everywhere for a copy of 'one flew over the cuckoos nest' and this was the only place I found a copy in stock and it was pretty much brand new.  Candy 19.01.13
One of the best secondhand bookshops I have ever visited. A varied, neatly organised selection of books across three floors. Decent SF section (paperbacks and hardbacks) upstairs; many comics also. In my opinion this is the finest bookshop in Cardiff, by a mile!  Richard 06.08.14
Yet again a Cardiff shop full of surprises. On first glance the shelves looked too neat and a bit boring, but time and patience proved my bonzana for in the basement on the very bottom shelves treasures abounded. I was pleasantly surprised at what I found; good quality titles which should have been given more prominence. The ice-cream parlour nearby is superb.  Chris Harte 15.08.21
An interesting and well-stocked city centre shop where I could easily have spent more time than I had available.  Wessexman 18.08.22

Troutmark/NEWPORT/5 Griffin Street
Troutmark     Open at advertised times
5 Griffin Street   NEWPORT  NP20 1GL
tel:  01637 216208  e-mail   web
Open: Thursday - Saturday 10.00 - 4.00
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Now open at new Griffin St premises. Paperback fiction and some hardback non-fiction.

This market stall has closed-the market is being modernised. However a shop in the next street has been decorated in the Troutmark livery; it seems full of boxes of books, but is yet to open.   Hafren 26.10.21
Thu-Sat only for the moment.  Stive 22.06.22
Made a special Saturday journey to Newport to find the shop with its shutters down, an incomprehensible scrawled message on the door and with the metal gates closed and padlocked. With most of the other shops in the street appearing to be empty I wonder if this shop has gone the same way.  Chris 25.03.23