Bert’s Books independent shop opens in Swindon

A QUEUE of excited readers awaited Alex Call on Bank Holiday Monday morning as he opened his new independent bookshop to customers for the first time.

Bert’s Books is now trading from Godwin Court in Old Town having built an excellent reputation online.

Owner Alex prides himself on selling lesser-known titles alongside bestselling books.

Swindon Advertiser:

Customers of all ages flocked to the store after it’s grand opening at 10.30am.

“It’s been good; it’s been busy,” owner Alex Call told the Adver when we visited the shop.

“My biggest fear was that no one was going to turn up or that everyone was going to turn up.”

A line had already started to form outside the shop before it opened and a steady stream of people followed.

The small shop was filled with customers browsing the bookshelves or drinking coffee and having cake on the benches inside.

Swindon Advertiser:

“We had a bit of a nightmare with the coffee machine this morning, but it’s back and running again now,” said Alex.

Bert’s Books first opened online in 2019, offering book bundles that fit all types of readers.

Every month Alex looks through all the new book releases to pick out the very best for each of the bundles.

Customers can choose to get bundles one-off, or as a monthly subscription service.

They can also pick a bundle by genre, but also by author, such as Robin Hobb and Anne Rice.

Alex later started a GoFundMe page in a bid to generate the money to be able to open a physical version of his online store.

Although he only managed to raise £2,400 rather than the £10,000 he aimed for, they still managed to open the store.

In February 2022, Alex announced to his 15,000 Twitter followers he had picked up the keys for his new place in Old Town.

Fans shared their excitement and have received regular updates from Alex since, including when he received 60 boxes of books and two beanbags for his new store.

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