Current News & Events

  • Exciting News!

    The Oxford Guild of Printers reports in the February newsletter that following a suggestion by Graham Moss (Incline Press) and Paul Kidson (Ludlow Bookbinders) at our Winter Wayzgoose that it is planned to open a private press bookshop in Hay-on-Wye on March 19th 2019. Please contact Emma & Oliver Balch: for further information on this interesting project.

    Events coming up:

    In April here are 5 PBFA events which are:

    6th Bath – The Assembly Rooms, BA1 2QH. 10.30-4.30pm. £2.00 admission.

    6th Bury St. Edmunds – The Athenaeum, Angel Hill, IP33 1LU. 10-4pm. Admission £1.

    13th Bakewell – The Agricultural Business Centre, Agricultural Way, DE45 1AH. 10-4pm. Admission £1.

    20th Sherborne – Digby Memorial Church Hall, Digby Road, Sherborne, Dorset, DT9 3NL. 10-4pm. Admission £1.

    28th Exeter – Matthews Hall, Topsham, EX3 0HF. 10.30-4pm. Admission £1.

    As usual look at the PBFA web site for further details: or email

    5th-7th Cambridge Literary Festival – Featuring George Monbiot, Jay  Rayner, Helen Oyeyemi  and others from politics to poetry at various locations around the city and for further information see the web site telephone  01223 515 335 or email:

    Ends 27th. University of Dundee, Bodies, Botanicals & Bindings: Reimagining Rare Books – An exhibition featuring the work of artists and creative writers inspired by the University Archives’ rare book collections. This exhibition by Archive Services uses some of the University’s extensive special collections to explore the history and materiality of rare books as well as the creativity they can inspire. ALSO as part of the exhibition on APRIL 12th at 11am is The Vaulted Marvels Book Launch is the result of an exciting collaboration between writers and illustrators studying at the University. The Lamb Gallery, Tower Building, Nethergate, Dundee, DD1 4HN opening times Monday to Friday 9.30am to 7pm; Saturday 1 to 5pm. Admission to both events is free.–bindings.php


    Writing: Making Your Mark, opens Fri 26 Apr – Tue 27 Aug 2019 at The British Library – A new exhibition that follows the evolution of writing from ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs carved in stone and early printed text such as William Caxton’s edition of The Canterbury Tales, to the art of note-taking by some of history’s greatest minds to the digital communication tools in use today.

    26th April to 5th May Hexham Book Festival – Hexham Book Festival, Queen’s Hall Arts Centre, Beaumont Street, Hexham, Northumberland, NE46 3LS. Featuring Michael Rosen, Chris Mullins, Benjamin Zapeniah, Irving Finkel, Ian Fraser, Neil Oliver and many other from the political to scientific world. Various locations in Hexham. Admission prices vary for each event. email: web site:


    4-7 April at the NEC, Birmingham, Art & Antiques for Everyone Spring Fair – The New Baxter Society. 

    The New Baxter Society is providing the Feature Exhibition at the Art & Antiques for Everyone Spring Fair, which will showcase the prints of George Baxter and his licensees, explaining how his patented “Baxter Process” prints were produced, and showing how these prints made affordable coloured pictures available to the masses for the first time. Admission £12-20, under 16’s free. 11-6pm, last day until 5pm.


    Etc Fairs run the Bloomsbury Book Fair at The Royal National Hotel in Bloomsbury WC1H 0DG with the next book fair on Sunday 14th April 10-3.30pm admission £2 untill 12.30pm and thereafter is free. On the 28th April, The Book, Ephemera and Postcard Fair will be held in conjunction with The Pulp & Paperback Fair from 9.30am to 3pm with £1.50 admission all day.

    For further information look at

    Coming up in May……
    USA – 3rd-5th St. Louis 13th Annual Fine Print, Rare Book & Paper Arts Fair to be held at The J. C. Penney Building
    UMSL North Campus, 1 University Blvd, St. Louis, MO, 63121, USA. There will be a silent auction and pre-exhibition party Friday, May 3, 2019- Silent Auction and Preview Party 6-9pm – tickets $25-50. Free admission thereafter Saturday May 4, 2019- 10am to 5pm Sunday May 5, 2019- 11am to 4pm. email: Web site:

    10th May to 9th June – The Society of Wood Engravers’ (SWE) 81st annual exhibition travels to Clare in Suffolk for the first time.

    Sea Pictures Gallery, Well House, Well Lane, Clare, Suffolk CO10 8NH. Winter opening hours: Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday – 10am-5pm. Sunday, Tuesday and Wednesday – Closed. Telephone 01787 279024 or email –

    May 11th – Chipping Campden Wayzgoose – Church Rooms, St James ChurchChurch StreetChipping Campden, England, GL55. 

    19th May St. Brides Foundation Wayzgoose, Bride Lane Fleet Street, London, EC4Y 8EQ. 11am-6pm. Tel: 020 7353 3331. Email:

    The Society of Bookbinders various regions begin to have events and meetings and this UK-based educational charity which is dedicated to traditional and contemporary bookbinding and to the preservation and conservation of the printed and written word showcases annually the best of British bookbinding.
    There are many web sites dedicated to specific aspects of the book trade and specialists will know of them. Listed below are a few that give an overview of fairs, news, bookshops and services to the trade: – American based daily update on all aspects of the book trade, authors, news, publications and even scandal. – Details of international book fairs and festivals – gives details of literary events mostly in the UK and Ireland but good coverage of overseas events – overview of fairs, news, bookshops – modern authors and trade news – sourcing rare and out of print books but with insights into the market, pricing and regulations – The Centre for Printing History and Culture run by the two Universities of Birmingham – Britain’s leading Fine Press printers, a wide range of design, printing and publishing amateurs and professionals. – International letterpress and printmaking information from a Belgium graphic designer – North American book fair, literary events and auctions information site that also has international information. – ATypI, Association Typographique Internationale – The global forum and focal point for the type community and business.

    Videos of proprietors of presses and publishers talking about their art and creative path can be found online with a broad brush coverage of the arts including publishers but mostly of painters and installation artists. has a comprehensive advice and how to do and who does what in publishing for writers and artists.



    April International Book Fair and Literary Events Calendar:

    ITALY: Until 13th April International Triennial of the Artist Book of Vilnius – “MEMENTO MORI” at The Scuola Internazionale Di Grafica, Cannaregio 1798, 30121 Venezia, Italy.

    An international jury has selected the 337 works that will be exhibited in the prestigious travelling exhibition until 2020. This Triennale is a cultural, non-commercial and unique project, organised to promote the artists of the artist’s book from all over the world and to connect publishers and galleries. (+39) 041.721.950


    FRANCE – 12th to 14th, International Rare Book, & Fine Art – Grand Palais, Avenue Winston Churchill, 75008, Paris, France, organized by the Syndicat national de la Librairie Ancienne et Moderne (SLAM) Livres Rares, Estampes & Dessins. Preview evening by invitation only Thursday 11th April 5 pm -10 pm. Friday, Saturday and Sunday : 11 am  – 8 pm admission 10 €, free under 18’s.

    Contact: Anne-Marie Coulon, Syndicat national de la Librairie Ancienne et Moderne, 4 rue Gît-le-Coeur 75006 PARIS
    T. +33 (0) 1 43 29 46 38. email: Web site:

    There are other European literary events and details of these can be found on based in America has a useful list of book fairs, auctions and literary events being held in North America and overseas. See


    Early Private Presses 1730-1900, by David Chambers

    This is the first comprehensive study of the private presses in the British Isles that were active in the 18th and 19th centuries. It will be printed in early 2018. In two volumes: Vol. 1 The Presses, c 300 pp, 75 illus. Vol 2: Bibliography, c. 300 pp. Cloth boards, imperial octavo. Both volumes will be issued as the free member book for the two years 2017 & 2018 combined. (To be included in the distribution of free copies of this standard edition, the PLA membership subscription must be paid for both years.) It is priced at £80 for both volumes, trade discount 25%. Special editions also available, 30 copies, both volumes bound in full morocco, in slip cases, with selected original leaves taken from 14 volumes of the presses concerned, price about £750. A further 70 copies will be issued with both volumes bound in quarter morocco, in slip cases, with original leaves from the same volumes, price about £375. 25% discount to PLA members or the trade. Postage extra. Join today and receive for free or reserve your copy using our order form. If you would like the prospectus pdf emailed to you, please send us a request using the contact form. The book description is on the publications books page.
  • Join today! 

    Become a member today and join an ever growing community of book enthusiasts…at last count over 450 individual members and over 80 institutional members! The year 2016 marked our 60th anniversary and the momentum of enthusiasm for all things PLA continues to grow. 2017 was the beginning of what we are confident will be another 6 successful decades for the PLA and 2018 will offer exciting new publications as well as fairs and events for our members.

    We want to encourage all bibliophiles – anyone who loves books – to join at an annual subscription of only £30. You will receive our well-respected quarterly journal, packed with interesting articles on all manner of subjects relating to books. Members also receive discounts on all our publications and a complimentary members book every 2 years. Students and anyone under the age of 26 will receive membership at only £15…so all young book collectors should sign up today!


Welcome to The Private Libraries Association

Founded in 1956, the Private Libraries Association is an international society of book collectors – collectors of rare books, fine books, single authors, special subjects, and, above all collectors of books for the simple pleasures of reading and ownership.

Private Libraries AssociationThe Association publishes a well regarded quarterly journal, The Private Library. It prints essays on members’ libraries, specialised collections, the work of the private presses, illustrators and, indeed, any aspect of the mania likely to appeal to collectors.  Reviews of new books are a regular feature.

A series of illustrated books on specialised aspects of book collecting has been issued over the past fifty years, those still in print described in our current Books Catalogue.  Also available is the annual bibliography Private Press Books, the definitive checklist for worldwide private press output from 1960 to 2008, which has been published by the Private Libraries Association since 1959.

Become a member today!  Members receive the journal, free books, discounts and access to the exclusive members’ Newsletter and  Exchange List, which is issued quarterly. A new feature, established in 2017, is a member page on-line exhibition. Members who wish to submit images and a short description of books from their collection are warmly invited do so. Any member interested in submitting photos of their collection should contact our Hon Secretary, Jim Maslen, via the contact form.  In addition, as correspondence within the Association is encouraged, a Members’ Handbook is issued about every three years, listing member contacts and collecting interests. A new handbook will be issued in 2018.