The Book Barge opened in June 2009 as an independent bookshop operating from a 60′ cruiser stern narrowboat. Since then it has chugged most of the inland waterways of England and Wales, gone to sea, been used as a diving platform and hip-hop video set, rusted a little and sold/swapped a fair number of books. It is run by Sarah Henshaw.
Fed up with city life, Sarah quit her job as an entertainment journalist in London and went in search of something different. In June 2009 she bought a narrow boat and began fitting it out as a book shop called The Book Barge. All went well initially, but the effect of the economic downturn and intense competition from online retailers meant hard times were to follow. She began trading her books for food and necessities and pretty much survives like this.
Sarah has now published a book about her adventures on Britain’s canals it’s called The Bookshop That Floated Away.