Antiquarian Booksellers Association

A trade body for the UK’s antiquarian and rare book dealers, the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association (ABA) was founded in 1906. It runs the annual London International Antiquarian Book Fair at Olympia as well as the Chelsea Book Fair, with other events organised throughout the UK by the Provincial Book Fairs Association (PBFA).

ABA works closely with the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers (ILAB), the umbrella organisation for 32 countries.


ABA Fair’s move to Battersea results in invigorated event

15 June 2018

The ABA Rare Book Fair London’s move to Battersea Evolution was marked by a 20% increase in visitor numbers last month, fulfilling organisers’ hopes for an invigorated event at the trendier location.


Skilling up the book trade

03 May 2018

How do aspiring dealers acquire the skills and expertise needed to enter the rare books or works on paper trade?


Proposed EU cultural goods bill ‘unworkable’ say trade bodies

16 April 2018

Book dealers seek change to 250-years-old clause in proposed import licensing law.

Sir David Attenborough

Sir David Attenborough will open the ABA Rare Book Fair in new Battersea venue

22 February 2018

The ABA Rare Book Fair will be opened by Sir David Attenborough this year as it launches in its new Battersea venue.

ABA exterior

A tale of two book fairs: ABA and PBFA kick off Rare Books London

05 June 2017

Two antiquarian book fairs held by the Antiquarian Booksellers Association (ABA) and Provincial Booksellers Fairs Association (PBFA) kicked off Rare Books London last week. The ABA’s London International Antiquarian Book ran from June 1-3 and the PBFA’s London International Premier Fair ran from June 1-2. Here, ATG takes you on a journey through the two west London events.

Books body rebrands training scheme after employment law shift

02 May 2017

The Antiquarian Bookdealers’ Association is to rebrand its young booksellers’ apprenticeship scheme as a training programme following a change in employment law.


New chapter for two major books events in London

02 May 2017

For the second year running, two major events – the ABA’s London International Antiquarian Book Fair, running from June 1-3 at the National Hall, Olympia, and the London International Book Fair organised by the PBFA at the ILEC Conference Centre in SW6 on June 2-3 – will run under the marketing umbrella Rare Books London.


A brief history of book dealing associations

02 May 2017

ATG’s timeline chronicling the history of book dealing associations from 1906 to 2016…


Industry bodies and the common bonds that tie the antiquarian book trade together

02 May 2017

From the earliest days a common bond has bound the antiquarian book trade together. And, more than ever, professional standards matter.

Beaux Books

A sneak peek at Rare Books London as ABA takes stand in BADA 2017

27 January 2017

The Antiquarian Booksellers Association will participate in its first BADA fair as it gears up for its summer festival of old and rare books later this year.

Chelsea Books

ABA reports 50% rise in sales during their annual Chelsea Book Fair

10 November 2016

The Chelsea Book Fair, which closed November 5 after a two-day run, has reported an increase in sales of nearly 50% on last year’s fair.

ILAB Leaders

ILAB elects new members of its international leadership committee

27 October 2016

The International League of Antiquarian Booksellers (ILAB) elected a new president and vice-president at their recent biannual OGM.

London International Antiquarian Book Fair

Book dealers in ‘paradise’ – party photos from 59th edition of London fair

13 June 2016

The 59th London International Antiquarian Book Fair (or “book paradise” as described by author Mark Beech in an admiring Facebook post), drew more than 180 book dealers to Olympia. View ATG's exclusive photogallery from the drinks reception held at the end of the fair’s second day.

BADA and ABA will ‘work towards closer cooperation’

27 May 2016

The British Antique Dealers’ Association (BADA) and the Antiquarian Booksellers Association (ABA) have announced plans to create a ‘memorandum of understanding’ between the two venerable trade bodies.


Dressed to kill

15 May 2014

This bizarrely dressed young man is the 23-year-old Alfred Hitchock, the film director who went on to make Psycho, North by North West, The Birds and Vertigo.

ABA bid to trace serial forger’s work

05 November 2012

The Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association is taking the fight to forgers after one of its members was instrumental in bringing serial forger Allan Formhals to justice.


Book dealers with a light touch – but business at the fair is serious

18 October 2011

YOU get the impression that the Chelsea Antiquarian Book Fair does not take itself too seriously – the opening page of the website bears the famous Groucho Marx quotation: "Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read."

ABA name new leaders

03 May 2011

THE Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association (ABA) has held its first ever contested election for the posts of president and vice president in its 105-year history.


ABA mourn their president

23 November 2009

ONLY three weeks after it was announced that Antiquarian Booksellers Association president Alan Shelley was standing down because of ill health, we are sorry to report that he has passed away.

Shelley steps down as president of ABA

09 November 2009

ALAN Shelley has decided that he can no longer continue as Antiquarian Booksellers Association president owing to illness.