Two Members

Earlyish start today (Friday), as Roger and I set forth once more. Important to see and meet members, especially ones I don’t know – so off to Hoylake to Marine & Cannon – and the Nashes. The anchor in the garden gives a clue. All about naval and maritime  here (daughter does military and aviation elsewhere).

Michael Nash

Michael Nash of Marine & Cannon

All immaculate within, not a book out of place or out of alignment on the shelves. Shipshape is the word that comes to mind. Doubly so – as a bookcase is floated off to the right to reveal further hidden bookcases beyond. Elsewhere in the house a whole secret room is similarly revealed. What fun this is – as various objects swim into view. Here’s a specimen jar from the Bounty, Captain Bligh’s knife, a cannonball from the Battle of the Nile – and prize beyond price – one of Nelson’s own books. And all with immaculate provenance. This is serious, specialist bookselling. An absolute delight. I’m so enjoying this.

Halewood & Sons

Halewood & Sons, Preston

Roger has to be back in Macclesfield by teatime to start organising tomorrow’s Macclesfield bookfair, so we regretfully conclude we don’t have time to visit both Southport and Preston, which had been the plan. Preston wins on the basis that it must be over twenty years since I last visited Halewood & Sons. Established 1867, it says. Remarkable longevity in a trade that only but rarely runs down through the generations.

Michael Halewood

Michael Halewood

Books piled high, wide and handsome. Roger’s rock-climbing skills called into play to traverse across to a Graham Greene first high above us. There might be anything here – and there is.  We chip away for over an hour and suspect that we have barely scratched the surface, but come away very happy with our purchases and know that we shall return. Roger objects to my taking a picture of him writing a cheque – he doesn’t want anyone to get the wrong idea.

He’s now setting up tables, I’m catching up with a double-blog to bring us up to date – and now I’m going to try and open the window to Room 202. Just for the devilment.

About Laurence Worms - Ash Rare Books

Laurence Worms has owned and run Ash Rare Books since 1971. He represented the antiquarian book trade on the (British) National Book Committee from 1993 to 2002 and has been six times an elected member of the Council of the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association. He was largely responsible for drafting the Association’s Code of Good Practice introduced in 1997, served as Honorary Secretary of the Association from 1998 to 2001 and as President from 2011 to 2013. He is a former member of the Council of the Bibliographical Society and continues to serve on the Council of the London Topographical Society. He writes and lectures on various aspects of the history of the book and map trades, and has lectured at the universities of Cambridge, London, Reading and Sheffield, as well as at the Bibliographical Society, the Royal Geographical Society, the Warburg Institute and at Gresham College. He teaches annually at the London Rare Books School and also organises the monthly Book Collecting Seminars at Senate House, University of London. Published work includes the compilation of fourteen ‘lives’ for the “Oxford Dictionary of National Biography”, a number of articles for “The Oxford Companion to the Book” and the chapter on early English maps and atlases for the fourth volume of “The Cambridge History of the Book in Britain”. A major essay on the same subject also appeared in “The History of Cartography” published by the University of Chicago Press. His long-awaited “British Map Engravers, co-written with Ashley Baynton-Williams, was published to critical acclaim in 2011”. More recently, he contributed the numerous biographical notes to Peter Barber’s hugely successful “London : A History in Maps”, co-published by the British Library and the London Topographical Society in 2012.
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