Barter Books is one of the biggest antiquarian bookstores in the UK with a tremendous selection of books from antique to contemporary novels. The place is so big you could literally spend a half a day here easily, inside the building you will find the orginal waiting rooms with roaring fires and places to sit and browse the books, they do what their name suggests as well, you can take in used books and trade against new purchases.
Inside is the Station Buffet - Open every day except Christmas Day, 9:00-18:30. (Last orders for hot food is 18:00) The Station Buffet is owned and operated by Barter Books. The inviting ambiance includes an open fire in three of the rooms, while the menu specializes in the owners' own preference for comfort food at its best - all of which is home-made, using local produce whenever possible. This ranges from soups to bacon sandwiches and our own cutom made hotdogs to Northumbrian rarebit to baked goods to die for! Also on offer: barista coffee, teas, hot chocolate - and, yes, wine, too!
Back in April 1991, and in the face of a rather large overdraft, Mary Manley decided to open a secondhand bookshop - one that would be based on the swap system and called Barter Books. Her husband, Stuart, immediately took to the idea and suggested that Mary open the shop in the front room of what was then his small manufacturing plant, located in Alnwick's magnificent old Victorian railway station. From that time a joint partnership was formed that would eventually result in what the New Statesman magazine would call 'The British Library of secondhand bookshops'.
Open all year
With Disabled Toilet
Must Do in Alnwick
N9857QFannep, York, United Kingdom
Our first visit to Barter Books, lovely experience, fantastic range of books at various prices. Good selection of reasonable paperbacks, large selection of hardback fiction and all genres represented. Specialist secondhand too. Cafe was v popular though did not visit this. Worth a visit just to see the mural and model train. Quirky place to visit
A bookworms dream
This place is extraordinary and one could get lost for days. Try to visit when it’s not terribly busy, else you get stuck in crowded spaces!
Great atmosphere, but prices have crept up.
Kate W, Lincolnshire, United Kingdom
We've been visiting Barter Books for years, and it's a great place for book lovers to spend an hour or two, especially when the weather is unkind. We were surprised to find them charging well over £2 for very standard second hand paperback fiction - we'll stick to NT bookshops where prices are about half that!
catherine512016, Middlesbrough, United Kingdom
A gorgeous unique cafe in what was a railway station. Find a table then order. Service excellent and food home made. Prices not over the top. A must when visiting Alnwick.
frenchy43, Leeds, United Kingdom
Awesome bookshop with an amazing atmosphere. A must visit if you are in Alnwick or staying in Northumberland. Visited many times and it never disappoints me. Some many different sections to choose from. Never left empty handed.