London & South

London and South
1 year ago
Society of Bookbinders > Regions > London & South

London & South

The London and South region was founded in 1980 and its area covers London, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Essex, Hampshire, Kent, South Oxfordshire, Surrey and the Isle of Wight.

We are the largest Region, with the most members in the UK. We meet on a monthly basis in central London where there are good transport links to most parts of our Region. Please do check for planned engineering works on your route and let us know at the earliest opportunity if you are unable to make it; we are often oversubscribed and have a waiting list.

  • Practical Workshops are normally £20 for members and £25 for non-members (plus materials fee where required)
  • Visits, Demonstrations & Talks are normally £15 members and £20 for non-members
  • Christmas Meeting (includes Suppliers Fair plus a Buffet Lunch) is £10   
  • NB:Please check individual listings for exact cost of each event.

Please scroll down for news and announcements on our Noticeboard or check our Instagram page @societyofbookbinders. We are also on Twitter @SoBLandS.


Our next event will be our Conference in Bath at the end of Aug 2019. Please follow the link from our Home page for more details.

Our next Regional events begin again in September 2019.

If you are already a member you will be informed directly, so please ensure your membership is up to date or join up! Non-members are very welcome, at all our events, but there are perks to being a member, such as discounts, but do hurry as places fill very quickly. If you miss out on an event don’t worry, contact us as we operate a waiting list and can accommodate observers at some events. We also repeat our more popular events wherever possible. Students also qualify for a reduced rate membership.



Philippa Räder


Ethel Mercedes


Talitha Wachtelborn



Unless stated otherwise, events run from 10.30 am to 3.30 pm at the Congregational Chapel, Kelly Street, Kentish Town, NW1 8PH.

The pedestrian entrance is, through the gates, between 34 & 36 Kelly Street and at the rear of the building on Church Avenue (door on the left at the end of the alleyway) where there is limited car parking. Church Avenue is off Kentish Town Road near the corner with Prince of Wales Road.

Nearest Tube is Kentish Town on the Northern Line, turn left out of the Station and it’s a 5min walk along the High St.

There is also an Overground Station nearby, Kentish Town West less than 5min.

Venue is well served by several London Bus routes, 46, 134, 214, 393, C2.

The lively High St has many cafes and food shops but you are welcome to bring food in to the venue for your lunch. Teas & Coffee are available for a small donation.

Venue is Fully Accessible with ramps at both entrances with a lift and an accessible toilet on the ground floor. Please be aware though, that unfortunately, there are no automatic doors to enter.


Submission of interest DOES NOT guarantee a place.

Due to oversubscription, we run a lottery system to allocate places, like a virtual hat we pull names out of!

Complete the form ONCE for each participant.

If more than one submission is received, the latest one will be counted.

Please make a note of your selections. It is advisable to keep dates free until you are notified of a place.

If payment is not received after attempts to contact you, places will be given to those on the waiting list.

This system was introduced to accommodate as many people as possible and to reduce no shows, no notice given and non-payment.

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Upcoming Events › London & South

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October 2019

Visit to The Vyne in Hampshire (National Trust Property)

October 9 @ 11:00 am - 4:00 pm
The Vyne, Vyne Road, Sherborne St.John, Basingstoke, Hants, RG24 9HL, Vyne Road, Sherborne St.John, Basingstoke, Hants, RG24 9HL + Google Map

The Vyne is a former Tudor Palace, near Basingstoke, Hampshire.  It is a fascinating National Trust property to visit, both the house and grounds. The library contains about 2500 volumes, which are currently being fully catalogued, and there are many interesting discoveries being made. We will visit the library at 11:00am, before the house opens to the general public, for a detailed viewing of some of the special items in the collection. Afterwards the house will be open for us…

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Papermaking Workshop with Richard & Emma Nichols

October 12 @ 10:30 am - 3:30 pm
Congregational Chapel, Kelly Street, Kentish Town, London, Congregational Chapel, Kelly Street, Kentish Town
London, NW1 8PH United Kingdom
+ Google Map

After an introduction, brief overview of moulds and the history of both Eastern and Western papermaking, you will learn how to prepare pulp and the vat for use. The day will be spent perfecting the techniques of making and processing paper, pressing, drying and sizing it ready for use. You will be able to take your paper home with you. Programme of the Day - Introduction to papermaking; history, equipment, materials and tools; show and tell - Demonstrations; preparation of…

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November 2019

Demonstration: Forwarding Techniques & Covering in Full Leather for a Modern Binding with Stuart Brockman

November 2 @ 10:30 am - 3:30 pm
Congregational Chapel, Kelly Street, Kentish Town, London, Congregational Chapel, Kelly Street, Kentish Town
London, NW1 8PH United Kingdom
+ Google Map

Stuart Brockman's demonstration will take a sewn text block through to covering in full leather. The session will include discussion about endpapers and sewing techniques, rounding and backing, board cushioning, lacing on boards, endbands, spine linings, preparation for covering, leather paring and finally covering in full goatskin. Advice will be given on further techniques, after covering, to help with board stabilisation, pasting down etc. The session will be a relaxed discussion with plenty of opportunity to ask questions/discuss methods. Numbers…

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December 2019

Maureen Duke Memorial Lecture by Christopher Harvey, Head of Conservation at The College of Arms

December 14 @ 11:00 am - 3:00 pm
Congregational Chapel, Kelly Street, Kentish Town, London, Congregational Chapel, Kelly Street, Kentish Town
London, NW1 8PH United Kingdom
+ Google Map

This year's Maureen Duke Memorial Lecture is by Christopher Harvey, Head of Conservation at The College of Arms. This last meeting of the year also includes demonstrations, mini suppliers fair, stalls and a buffet reception. Please note we start a little later at 11am,  members can do some Christmas shopping and watch some demonstrations. The lecture will begin promptly at 12:30pm and finish approx at 1:30pm, incl Q & A. Then it's time to raise a glass, enjoy some food and…

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Welcome to your L&S webpage!

Please also view our new Social Media pages!

Instagram: @societyofbookbinders

Twitter: @SoBLandS

Please tag us into your posts and show us your #wip (work in progress), images of finished work and let us know about your latest projects, exhibitions or workshops!

Feel free to contact us with your suggestions, recommendations and news. We look forward to seeing you or hearing from you in the real & virtual world!

Bookbinding Workshop in SE London

Thurs 1-3pm Term times in Bexleyheath

£120 per 12 week term

Autumn term 19th Sept – 12th Dec 2019.

This is a friendly small workshop suitable for students with some previous bookbinding experience. You will learn new techniques and skills through a collaborative approach with the facilitator and the other bookbinders in class.

Most of the equipment needed is available in the bindery but you will need a craft knife, pencil and notebook.
Bring any project you wish to work on (i.e. an old book for repair or some paper for folding for a new book), a craft knife and any other personal tools you may have.

Further details:


Learning & Enterprise College Bexley
5 Brampton Road



Understanding Book Structures for Conservation  

Sussex Conservation Consortium Ltd

9, Crossgates, Rackham Road, Amberley, Arundel, West Sussex, BN18 9NS

This practical 5-day course will introduce the materials, tools and techniques most commonly used in Western European bookbinding. By understanding the historical context and changing manufacture of binding production, students will gain knowledge of how and why some bindings fail whilst others stand the test of time. Simple but effective preservation solutions will be explored to mitigate common library collection problems.

For more information contact Ruth:

Tel: 07857632846






FOR SALE Nipping Press

(see our Instagram @societyofbookbinders for pictures)

The Winchester School of Art is selling a large Hampson and Betteridge Nipping Press

Overall dimensions including stand: 104 w x 65 d x 139 h

Platen size: 79 x 53cm

The press is in good working condition and has been in use for conservation projects up until recently.

It is mounted on a low wooden stand that allows it to be lifted with a set of forklift trucks.

The press is for collection only and will require a vehicle with tail lift to load it.

The press was kindly gifted to WSA to aid improving their selection of woodtype and  they are open to all reasonable offers or to exchange for wood type (preferably complete founts or near as)

Please contact:


Winchester School of Art

Like the rest of The Society of Bookbinders, the London & South Region is run and organised by volunteers. There are currently 12 of us. However, new volunteers are always welcome. If you are interested in joining us, have skills you can contribute, come along to a meeting before you decide and observe us in action! We have a few vacancies coming up for key roles within the Committee so get in touch!