Nottingham’s Page 45 comic shop is celebrating after being shortlisted for The Bookseller’s Independent Bookshop of the Year award.
The renowned store, which was established in 1994 and will be celebrating its 20th anniversary “on the road” at the Lakes International Comic Art Festival on 17th October, is one of 38 stores that have earned a spot on the regional shortlists and is in the running to be The Bookseller’s Independent Bookshop of the Year, sponsored by Gardners. The contenders this year include defending champion, the Wirral’s Linghams Bookshop, and 2012’s winner, The Mainstreet Trading Company from St Boswells in the Scottish Borders.
The 38 shops will now vie to win their respective regions, which will be announced on 14th March. The regional winners then compete for the overall prize, which will be awarded at The Bookseller Industry Awards at the Hilton, Park Lane, London, on 12th May. Award sponsor Gardners will present the winners with £5,000 to be spent on their shop.
Despite the current struggles of independent booksellers, there are eight shops shortlisted for the first time, including Edinburgh’s Looking Glass Books, Stow-on-the-Wold’s Borzoi Bookshop, and Page 45.
The award nomination is not the first time Page 45 has been in the spotlight. In 2012 the store was voted for then judged Best Independent Retailer in Nottingham, in 2013 Page 45 was voted for then judged the Best Independent Business in Nottingham, and in 2004 they won the only ever Diamond Comics Award for Best Retailer In The UK.
Page 45 is a comic shop whose goal has always been simple: to bring the widest range of quality comics and graphic novels available into contact with as many new people as possible, and to do so with a warmth, honesty and informed eloquence in a relaxed, welcoming and professional environment. The owners aim to recreate the European model which has meant that comics and their creators there have always been received with the respect they deserve and the sales to accompany it.
To celebrate its 20th Anniversary on Friday 17th October 2014, Page 45 has announced they will be contributing “to an entire weekend of special guests and glorious graphic novels in Cumbria’s picturesque town of Kendal during the UK’s finest, European-style comics convention, The Lakes International Comic Art Festival.
“This includes a full-blown signing at the Page 45 tables by Understanding Comics venerable Scott McCloud,” we’re told. “There’ll even be a Page 45 20th Anniversary Booze Bash on Friday night itself.” Full details here on the Page 45 web site.
“The Lakes International Comic Art Festival is vital to the profile of comics,’ enthuses Page 45’s Stephen L. Holland. “It brings the medium out of the bedsit and into the open for the whole world to see! It’s our very own Angoulême, celebrating this medium in all its diversity, attracting connoisseurs and the curious alike to its exhibitions, interviews, workshops and creators merrily signing and sketching all weekend long.”
The nominees The Bookseller‘s Independent Bookshop of the Year award are:
Bridge Street Books, Wicklow
O’Mahony’s Booksellers, Limerick
The Blessington Bookstore, Blessington
The Gutter Bookshop, Dublin
Whyte Books, County Cork
Atkinson-Pryce Books, Biggar
Far From the Madding Crowd, Linlithgow
Looking Glass Books, Edinburgh
The Bookmark, Granton-on-Spey
The Edinburgh Bookshop, Edinburgh
The Mainstreet Trading Company, St Boswells
Linghams Bookshop, Wirral
Storytellers, Inc., Lytham St Annes
The Book Case, Hebden Bridge
The Grove Bookshop, Ilkley
White Rose Bookcafe, Thirsk
MIDLANDS & WALES
Booka Bookshop, Oswestry
Page 45, Nottingham
Rossiter Books, Ross-on-Wye
The Bookshop Kibworth, Kibworth
The Chepstow Bookshop, Chepstow
Warwick Books, Warwick
SOUTH AND SOUTH-EAST
Chapter One, Reading
One Tree Books, Petersfield
The Wallingford Bookshop, Wallingford
Chorleywood Bookshop, Chorleywood
The Book Hive, Norwich
Dulwich Books, London
Goldsboro Books, London
Heywood Hill, London
Pages of Hackney, London
Octavia’s Bookshop, Cirencester
The Book Shop Liskeard, Liskeard
The Borzoi Bookshop, Stow-on-the-Wold
The Torbay Bookshop, Paignton