Overlooking our town’s central Triangle on Cobbold Road, and commanding more than a passing glance, the ever-changing window displays and rummage inviting pavement boxes belong to The Treasure Chest Bookshop.
The original Treasure Chest was set up in Felixstowe by Robert Green in 1984. It grew to be one of the biggest second hand bookshops in East Anglia. After Robert retired in 2013, Helen and Martin Bott bought the business, having previously run a bookshop in Horwich, Lancashire since 1999. Looking for a new challenge, they sold the Horwich shop and moved to Felixstowe keeping the Treasure Chest name as it was so well known here.
Martin’s background in transport management made for the focus for much of the specialist material, which remains with transport, railway and industrial history.
2013 saw relocation to their current, larger shop: you can’t miss it heading into town from the railway station.
From behind the counter and surrounded by books of all genres from floor to ceiling, Helen tells us that approximately one third of their customers are Felixstowe based, one third from further afield in Suffolk and one third from all over the UK, making The Treasure Chest very much a ‘destination’ book shop. With a current stock of 66000 books, and more available online, this local treasure has been attracting browsers from all over the country, with many dedicated customers returning to buy again and again.
Our local treasure is the biggest online retailer of transport books in the UK and have been selling online for 25 years, shipping all over the world. All the online books are kept in the Felixstowe shop and packaging and posting are part of the daily routine.
If you’ve only ever just walked past the shop, you must go and lose yourself into the labyrinth that is Treasure Chest. Just when you think you’ve reached the end of the shop, there’s another shelf, rising just beyond it. You could spend hours in here and forget the weather outside, or make your selection and take to the beach, The Seafront Gardens, or any one of our cafes and restaurants to get lost in a novel or slice of non-fiction with your Earl Grey.
While Transport, Maritime, East Anglia, Industry, Military and History, are specialist focus for the shop, you can also find shelves of fiction, including an impressive selection of crime fiction plus a children’s corner that is positively bursting with eye catching classics for all ages to take home.
With an increase in reading since lockdown, demand for material has increased, and what more sustainable way to read than to buy a second hand book?
Martin and Helen travel the country for private collections and auctions to find stock, his travels are entertainingly documented on social media.
Pop in and have a browse. Meet Helen, Martin or Glynis and see what you can find to bookmark. More info and online sales: https://www.bottbooks.com/