bookshop


People queued outside the Oxfam bookshop on Wanstead High Street on Saturday morning, anticipating the 10am opening of what, according to reliable sources, is believed to be Wanstead’s first bookshop in at least 50 years.

And here, exclusively to Wansteadium, are the first ten purchases made at the shop:

1. Rembrandt’s Eyes by Simon Schama

2. The Great Moghuls by Bamber Gascoigne

3. American Prince, My Autobiography, by Tony Curtis

4. Tommy: The British Soldier on the Western Front 1914-18, by Richard Holmes

5. Collins Dictionary and Thesaurus 2004

6. The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood (Audio CD)

7. Rebecca, by Daphne du Maurier
Nicholas Nickleby, by Charles Dickens (Audio book)

8. Beatles by Lars Saabye Christensen
Bob Dylan Chronicles book one
Tarantino A-Zed by Alan Barnes and Marcus Hearn
Classical 1000 – Top recordings of all time, by Rob Cowan

9 . The Young Lloyd George, by John Grigg
WG’s Birthday Party by David Kynaston

10. Coast – The Journey Continues, by Christopher Somerville
The Somme Day by Day Account by Chris McCarthy

Thanks to Mark Appiah and shop manager Jillian White.

Photo: Peter Hall

Wanstead’s Oxfam bookshop will open on Saturday morning at 10am, Wansteadium can reveal.

The preparations, which have included completely overhauling the inside of the former travel agent on Wanstead High Street, have been completed; the shelves are filled with books and volunteers have been signed up, though more are still welcome.

Oxfam area manager Mark Appiah confirmed the opening plan to Wansteadium. Reviews from readers welcome here from Saturday.

Former Devon House Interiors on Hermon HillAs Wansteadium noted last week, the “Opening Soon” posters completely covering the windows of the former Devon House Interiors on Hermon Hill are pretty successful at building a sense of anticipation: it’s a large shop, great setting, lots of people passing… what could it be? A restaurant, perhaps? A new cafe? A bookshop even?

Underwhelming as it might seem, Wansteadium has reason to believe it’s going to be a kitchen and bathroom showroom. (Sound of hopes being dashed.)

He certainly has a point. zzgavin writes the following on Twitter:

Walk through forest, now local cafe for pastries and coffee, then to butcher and greengrocers, enjoying wanstead life. No bookshop though

It would take a feat of imagination to think anything could change about it now – the Times reported last week that three independent bookshops around the country were shutting each week – so who would bet on one opening in Wanstead in a hurry? But in other news, the Christian bookshop in South Woodford, which, as we reported here, churchgoers were rallying to save, has now been taken over by a charity and will continue selling Christian books. It might even expand to include a cafe, they say.