DAVID WHITTAKER was born and bred in Drogheda, Ireland. On moving to London in 1973, aged 18, he soon got a job in the bibliographic paradise of the Charing Cross Road (Watkins Bookshop). In 1978 he set up his own business dealing in second-hand books from a bookstall in Camden Passage, Islington (with the novelist Iain Sinclair acting as tutelary exemplar). He has been dealing in books ever since. In fact, book dealing has been David’s unique university over the decades, providing him with a well-stocked & eclectic mind!

Along the way David has worked for the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford, managed an art gallery in Woodstock, and acted as freelance copy-editor. He also co-managed, for many years, the last surviving independent bookshop in Oxford. In 2001 Oxford University Press commissioned him to value their out-of-print library of 40,000 books, a huge undertaking!

David has often been heard on Radio Oxford. In 2009 he appeared in a BBC TV Arena documentary about the life of the musician Brian Eno. In 2015 the University of Venice invited him to give an illustrated talk (in the 16th-century Benedictine monastery of San Giorgio Maggiore), alongside many of the world’s foremost Shakespeare scholars, as part of the Shylock Project. David is a member of the Provincial Booksellers Fairs Association,   Fine Press Book Association & The Society of Authors. He has been shortlisted twice for a Holyer an Gof Award – finishing a close runner-up on both occasions!

For 37 years David has lived quietly in Charlbury, on the edge of the Oxfordshire Cotswolds (in a house bursting at the seams with books), with his wife Penny and daughter Alice.

David is as accomplished with his pen as he is with his camera  The Cornishman

Readings & Talks

Royal Society of Arts, London

London School of Economics

Penzance Arts Club, Cornwall

St Ives Arts Club, Cornwall

Tolcarne Inn, Cornwall

St Ives September Festival

Porthmeor Studios, St Ives

Woodstock Literary Festival, Oxon

Malik Management Zentrum,

St Gallen, Switzerland

Liverpool John Moores University

Pauling Centre - University of Oxford

(The Oxford Italian Association)

Centro Culturale Don Orione Artigianelli (Venice)

Fondazione Giorgio Cini, Isola di San Giorgio Maggiore (University of Venice)

Gurnard’s Head Hotel, Cornwall

Penzance Literary Festival

Madron History Group

Exhibitions of Photographs

Newington House Gallery, Charlbury

Wellbeing Clinic, Oxford

Oxford University Press

Waterstones Bookshop, Oxford

Woodstock Arts, Oxon

Tolcarne Inn, Newlyn, Cornwall

Navy Inn, Penzance, Cornwall

Queen’s Arms, Botallack, Cornwall

Bicester Leisure Centre, Oxon

Jam Factory, Oxford

Flash in a Pan, Oxford

Morvah Schoolhouse, Cornwall

Articles & Photos contributed to

The Oxford Times

Cotswold Review

The Cornishman

Times Literary Supplement


Bonhams Auction Catalogue          

Project Cybersyn Catalogue

(La Moneda Presidential Palace, Santiago, Chile)

The Guardian (including obituaries of the painters Tony O’Malley, Jane O’Malley, Nancy Wynne-Jones, Colin Scott, Michael Snow, Jeremy Le Grice; the sculptor Conor Fallon and Dr Roger Slack)

How elegant in writing & editing, as well as design, Wavestone Press books are. A real delight & an ornament to the shelves

         Professor Peter Davidson – University of Oxford

‘Autodidact’ was the first big word I taught myself