Email info[at]octoberbooks.org
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Fax 023 8058 1040
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We’re looking for a new home!

Picture by Oliver Dean, from Social Saturday Mapjam

Co-operative community bookshop October Books in Portswood is looking for new premises, either to rent or to buy, as we cannot afford the rent increase in our current location. Our tenancy agreement sees an increase in rent to £30,000/annum in May 2018, which we will struggle to afford. Our cooperative team have made the decision to serve our notice at our Portswood Road location and are now looking for other suitable premises in the same area.

October Books is Southampton’s only independent bookshop and has been selling books and providing information, support and literature to the community for over 40 years. We also stock a wide range of gift cards, and foods for people on vegetarian, vegan and gluten free diets.

We had expressed an interest in another local property, but unfortunately the premises went to another party. We are now looking at the possibilities of purchasing a property and will be viewing the old NatWest bank on Portswood Road in early November. We are looking for other interested groups and organisations who may like to share the responsibility and the costs of community ownership of a property.

‘October Books has been struggling to afford the rent in our current location for a number of years and we realised we needed more affordable premises to continue to trade and serve the local community ’ said Clare Diaper, one of the cooperative members. ‘It would really turn things around if our rental payments were paying off a loan or mortgage so that we could own a property, especially if we were doing this in collaboration with other groups, creating a community hub where people can come to share, cooperate and communicate new ideas.  Wherever we relocate, October Books will continue trading, and we aim to be around for another 40 years.’

The shop is run as a cooperative and a new team took over the reins in July 2016 when long term cooperative member Ian Lamming retired. The new team of Clare Diaper, Jess Haynes, Joey Jones and Jaquie Daniels have been supported by Annabel Hodgson who has been involved in the cooperative since it started in 1977. ‘October Books plays an important part in the community as one of Southampton’s oldest Cooperatives. Independent book shops are a fabulous resource, championing great books and bringing local perspectives and these are things we do not want to loose from our city’, she said.

If you are interested in possibly sharing a premises with October Books, have any thoughts and ideas about potential new premises or can offer advice or help with anything from PAT testing to proposal writing, cleaning to community development, business planning to admin, please write to clare@octoberbooks.org. This is going to be a cooperative effort.

Opening Times

Monday to Saturday: 9am to 6pm

Sunday: Closed

Book of the Week

In A Different Keythumbnail

In A Different Key

In a Different Key: The Story of Autism by John Donvan and Caren Zucker

The stunning history of autism as it has been discovered and felt by parents, children and doctors

Nearly seventy-five years ago, Donald Triplett of Forest, Mississippi became the first child diagnosed with autism. In a Different Key tells the extraordinary story of the world his diagnosis created – a riveting human drama that takes us across continents and through some of the great social movements of the twentieth century.

The history of autism is, above all, the story of families fighting for a place in the world for their children. It is the story of women like Ruth Sullivan, who rebelled against a medical establishment that blamed “refrigerator mothers” for causing autism, of fathers who pushed scientists to dig harder for treatments, of parents who forced schools to accept their children. But many others played starring roles too: doctors like Leo Kanner, who pioneered our understanding of autism, scientists who sparred over how to treat autism, and those with autism, like Temple Grandin and Ari Ne’eman, who explained their inner worlds and championed a philosophy of ‘neurodiversity’.

This is also a story of fierce controversy: from the question of whether there is truly an autism ‘epidemic’, and whether vaccines played a part in it, to scandals involving ‘facilitated communication’, one of many treatments that have proved to be blind alleys. And there are dark turns too: we learn about experimenters feeding LSD to children with autism, or shocking them with electricity to change their behavior; and the authors reveal, for the first time, that Hans Asperger, discoverer of the syndrome named after him, may have cooperated with the Nazis in sending disabled children to their deaths.

By turns intimate and panoramic, In a Different Key takes us on a journey from an era when families were shamed and children were condemned to institutions, to one in which parents and people with autism push not simply for inclusion, but for a new understanding of autism: as difference rather than disability.

Now available in store at October Books…

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