Hidden gem uncovered at charity book store

First edition Enid Blyton book at the Oxfam Book Shop in Thame - pictured is shop manager Dick Jennens with volunteers Samantha Bourke and Keith Linger
First edition Enid Blyton book at the Oxfam Book Shop in Thame - pictured is shop manager Dick Jennens with volunteers Samantha Bourke and Keith Linger

VOLUNTEERS at a charity bookshop uncovered a rare find last week as a first edition Enid Blyton book worth £400 was discovered.

The precious copy of The Castle of Adventure, published in 1946, now forms the centre piece of the shop’s Christmas children’s window display.

The valuable treasure was donated to the Oxfam Bookshop on Cornmarket and discovered amongst a stack of other aged books.

Shop manager Dick Jennens said: “It was donated by some one along with a big pile of old books. They were mostly children’s books ranging from the 1950s and 1960s.

“That book in particular stood out to the volunteer who found it was put aside to look at further.

“We were quite busy at the time and it sat on the shelf for a week or two.

“When I had a closer look I very quickly realised it was a first edition.

“It looks as though it was bought, read once and then put on a book shelf for years. We don’t often get children’s books worth £400.”

The 1946 novel is the second book in her Adventure series and still has its original dust wrapper illustrated by Stuart Tresilian.

The story follows the adventures of Jack, Lucy, Dinah and Phillip as they attempt to uncover out what is behind the strange goings-on at a ruined castle near Spring Cottage in Scotland.

“I suspect it will be bought by a collector or as a gift for someone.”

“Often when people donate to us they say ‘I hope you find something valuable.”

“£400 will do so much for Oxfam. It’s probably the cost of 150 buckets.

“That might not seem a lot but in a country or area that is suffering from extreme drought having a bucket to carry water is so important.

For more information contact the shop on 01844 214645 or oxfamshopf3715@oxfam.org.uk