Somewhere between the oldest pharmacy in England and some of the cutest cafés in the Cotswolds, you’ll find the Madhatter Bookshop. All books, hats, and more books, this independent booksellers can be found in the heart of Burford, a historic market town which is often referred to as the ‘Gateway to the Cotswolds’.
Madhatter Bookshop: 122 High St, Burford OX18 4QJ
In the East of Oxfordshire, a quintessentially English county well-known for its hidden gems and secret spot, Burford has been voted as one of the top places to live in Europe. Home to many an antique shop and country pub, there’s even a centuries-old church which dates back to the 12th-century.
Created by partners Richard Kemp and Sara Hall as a way of combining their love of headwear and all things words, there are both hats and books for sale in the bookstore. A rather unusual combination to say the least! Hall is an Oxford graduate and former solicitors, while Kemp is a former publishing executive, having specialised in selling English language textbooks.
The bookshop was opened in 2011 and is housed in a building of a bookstore that closed down. Although the women’s hats are pretty quirky in their design, the selection is incredibly diverse when you consider that the entire store is just two rooms! Also for sale is all manner of cards, stationery, and other small gifts. So wander in if you’re ever in the area… Who knows what you might end up purchasing!
Things to do near the Madhatter Bookshop
Robert Reavley: Located along the high street, it’s alleged that this chemist is the oldest in England. Trading for over two hundred an eighty years, the walls are lined with Victorian era cabinets. However, should you need to buy anything, rest assured that there’s still plenty of modern medication for sale!
Tolsey Museum: Located in a timber-framed building which was once integral to the wool trade which once made the town so prosperous, today the museum is dedicated to the history of Burford and beyond. Important to note is that the town museum is only open during peak season!
Wander around Burford: Even if you head to the Gateway to the Cotswolds with no set plans, you’re sure to have an enjoyable time. After all, attractions aside, this market settlement is high above the River Windrush is best enjoyed by simply strolling around, gradually allowing Burford to reveal itself to you.