Gleebooks is Sydney’s leading independent bookseller. We have been in business for over 40 years, and online since 1996. We have branches in Glebe, Dulwich Hill, Blackheath and a foyer stall at the Roslyn Packer Theatre in Walsh Bay.
On 26 January 1975 Ray Jelfs and Tony Gallagher opened a secondhand shop at 191 Glebe Point Rd. Previously it was the site of Peacock’s Hollywood Lending Library and Reading Room. Roger Mackell worked part time in 1975–1977 while he completed an Arts degree and DipEd at Sydney University. Following Tony Gallagher’s sudden death in 1978, Roger along with David Gaunt formed a partnership to keep the shop going. They expanded the business to include new books and they remain the owners of Gleebooks today.
By the early eighties we had cemented our reputation as one of Sydney’s best independent bookshops. Our location, in what was then a bohemian Glebe, and proximity to the University of Sydney earned us a reputation amongst academics, students, and progressive thinkers. By 1990 we had outgrown 191 Glebe Point Road and expanded, down the road, to our current location at 49 Glebe Point Road (originally a boxing ring and gymnasium in the early twentieth century. Our first ‘branch shop’ opened in Blackheath in 2008.
Our large first floor at 49 Glebe Point Road, with a seated capacity of 200 people, has allowed us to create one of Sydney (if not Australia’s) best literary events and ideas programmes. We host over two hundred events upstairs every year and have welcomed names of the calibre of Salman Rushdie, Margaret Atwood, Colm Toibin, David Malouf, and Annie Proulx. Australia’s brightest thinkers and best journalists join us for conversations and panel discussions every week.
In 2023 a large renovation of the premises at 49 Glebe Point Road commenced and as a result the shop relocated to the old Glebe Post Office building at 181a Glebe Point Road, some 400 metres away. An expected completetion of the renovation in late 2023 will see lift/disabled access to a re-envisioned events space and mezzanine cafe/bar.
We continue to strive to provide exemplary customer service to schools, libraries institutions as well as the general public.