Glen Arkadieff/Oxfam

Donating books

Donating books to Oxfam helps fund our vital work fighting poverty worldwide. Find out where to donate, what kinds of books you can donate, and what happens to your donations.

Where to donate books - donate to our shops

Running out of shelf space or downsizing your book collection?

Give your books a second life! Donate them to your local Oxfam shop.

If you're unsure where to donate books, you can search for Oxfam charity shops that accept books near you with our shop finder.

Which Oxfam shops accept book donations?

All of Oxfam's more than 550 high street shops accept book donations. Even those that don't sell books, or are running out of space can accept them.

What can't be sold in one shop will be sent on to another for sale.

If you are a UK taxpayer, you can help Oxfam make the most of your donated books for charity causes worldwide by signing up for Gift Aid. You can sign up online, or in person when you donate. This helps Oxfam raise an extra 25% on the value of your donation by reclaiming government basic rate tax.

You might not know that Oxfam is the biggest chain of second hand bookshops in Europe. So you know you're giving your donated books the best chance of finding a new home.

Rachel Manns/Oxfam

A lady donating books and a blackbag of clothes to the Cowley Road Shop, Oxford.

A donation of books and clothes to Cowley Road Shop, Oxford

Donate books by post

Use our donation bags to donate books by post for free. Just follow these steps:

  1. You can reuse one of your own bags and print off a postage label, or order one of our recycled donation bags online.
  2. Pack your books.
  3. Add your Gift Aid number.
  4. Then drop them off at your local Collect+ drop off point.

You can include any of the items that Oxfam accepts with your books for donation.

What types of books can I donate to charity?

We accept all books, regardless of the genre, value, age or topic. Whether paperback or hardback, fiction or non-fiction. We also accept audiobooks on cassette and CD. Plus comic books and graphic novels. We especially welcome books that are in good condition.

Examples of popular genres that are donated to our charity shops include:

  • Children's books
  • Academic books and text books
  • Rare and collectable books
  • Fiction of all genres
  • Informational books and guides on any topic
  • Poetry and plays
  • Reference books

Customers browsing at Oxfam's Hay Festival book shop in 2018.

Can I donate rare books?

We're very happy to accept donations of rare and valuable books. From antiques to signed copies, collectables to first editions.

Our volunteers are almost always able to research unusual and rare books. So we can make the most of your donations.

If you'd like to, you can speak to a volunteer, or include a note with the donation about what makes your books special, for extra peace of mind.

Suzy Hazelwood, pexels.com

Can books be recycled?

Don’t worry if your pre-loved books aren’t in perfect condition!

Any donated books that Oxfam can't sell, even after they've been up for sale in multiple shops, are used for wood pulp and recycled by our partners.

Because Oxfam’s recycling systems are so efficient, we make a profit even on books that can’t be resold.

Our specialist bookshops

We have over 120 dedicated Books and Music high street shops in the UK.

These only stock only books and music in the form of CDs, vinyl, cassettes, DVDs, Blu-rays. As well as musical instruments and sheet music.

They're sorted and organised by type and alphabetically by our fantastic volunteers. So it's easy to find what you're looking for.

If there isn't a dedicated Oxfam Books and Music shop in your town, then your local Oxfam shop will have a books section. Alongside clothing, accessories and homewares.

Radka Dolinska / Oxfam

Lesley buying books in the Oxfam Books and Music Shop in Chorlton

Lesley buying books in the Oxfam Books and Music Shop in Chorlton.

Our online book shop

If you’re clearing out some space and want to refresh your book collection, you can find a huge range of books on our online shop.

We have over 100,000 books in stock at any one time. From bargains under £5, to recent bestsellers, to rare and antique collectables.

Books are listed online if they're unusual rare or collectors items. They may also be books that haven't sold in stores immediately, but are too valuable to recycle.

Books and music on our online shop.

Categories include children's books, crime fiction, and romance, as well as non-fiction like biographies, art and photography, and food and drink.

Each category can be filtered into narrower subcategories. So you can browse to find exactly what you're looking for.

You can also search for your favourite titles and authors.

We never know what we'll receive in donations, so check back regularly to snap up bargains and hidden gems!

Become a books volunteer for Oxfam

Radka Dolinska / Oxfam

Volunteer Wagayu is wearing a face mask and poses in an Oxfam shop

Wagayu, an Oxfam volunteer at Whitworth Park, Manchester

Oxfam book donations are sorted and prepared for sale by our fantastic team of volunteers.

We’re always keen to welcome new volunteers to help fund Oxfam’s vital work fighting poverty, whatever your reasons for volunteering.

Maybe you have expert knowledge of books or are keen to learn more. Maybe you'd like to meet new people. Or to find new favourite reads.

How much time you volunteer, and what you do is completely up to you.

If you’re thinking of volunteering, definitely do it! There’s more than one role in the shop that you can do, so there is something for everyone.”

Alice, Till, Book sorting and Antiquarian book Volunteer at Oxfam Bookshop Bath