Book Cycle is a UK based, volunteer run charity that provide books to the public, allowing people to take up to three books per day for a donation of their choice. That’s right… there is no minimum donation required!
Book Cycle have 5 branches in the UK and 1 in Italy! They also have small mini shelves inside of a couple of other businesses such as bars, cafes, universities and galleries.
Unfortunately, these branches are not very spread out, but hopefully they will expand their horizons in the future.
On the other hand, we are lucky to have three of their branches on our doorstep, so we can share a little bit about our experience there…
Me and Bella went to two of the Book Cycle branches recently and in both venues we were greeted by very friendly staff and a welcoming atmosphere with plenty of books to browse and choose from!
You can spend as much time there as you like, in their cosy indoor seating areas or their outdoor garden seating, allowing you sit and read in a nice peaceful environment.
Although they do not have an electronic system and therefore no database for the books that they have; they staff may be able to help you locate a specific author if they have seen any books by them around the shelves.
We found that a lot of their books were in great condition and there were certainly some bargains to be found! Bella was able to get her hands on the full Maze Runner series (5 books); which was bound in string and was being classed as 1 book! I found some books by Cecilia Ahern, which I just had to take home, along with some other books by authors I have never delved into before.
We spent a lot of time picking out our three books of choice before dropping our donation at the reception desk and heading home. They do not question your donation size, it is purely up to you what you give, the charity is designed to make books available to all people whatever their financial situation. We chose to give a minimum of £1 per book.
Book Cycle run solely from the donations that they receive.
Their staff are all volunteers and they do not use any funds raised for any form of staff nights out or wages – all the money raised goes back into the charity, being used for rent of the venue and basic bills that are needed in order to make the the venue run smoothly all year round.
Some of the venues also host events in order to raise more funds as well as bringing the local community together for fun, games, activities and raffles!
We definitely recommend visiting if you are nearby!
Check out their branches here: Book Cycle