Our grand new home

Good to see building work is underway at Topping and Company’s new Bath-based bookshop.

It’s my understanding they will be open for business before Christmas after transforming the interior of the Grade 2 listed Friend’s Meeting House in York Street. They’ll be moving from the Paragon where they have been based for fourteen years.

I came across the start of the process of opening up the central ‘blind’ doorway when l passed by the other day.

Becoming a bookshop will be an exciting new chapter for a building that has a rich historic legacy.

Designed in 1817 by William Wilkins, architect of The National Gallery, for use as a Masonic Hall, it was an assembly room and non-conformist chapel during the 1830s and has since been in the hands of the Religious Society of Friends. It’s one of the few remaining examples of the Greek revival style in Bath.

In a press release the company says the new bookshop “would have a mezzanine and multiple floors, lined with handcrafted bookcases and our signature rolling library ladders, allowing us to offer a huge selection of fiction, children’s books, cookery writing, history and much more.

With a much larger space we’ll also be able to host many more of the biggest names in the literary world in the bookshop itself – and of course there will also be plenty of lovely spaces for you to sit and enjoy a complimentary pot of tea and coffee too! “

It’s my understanding this will be the largest independent book store in the country when it opens. Their only issue involves sorting out the signage for the new bookshop as their original proposals were turned down by B&NES