Book restoration and repair Manchester Walker Print


& Repair

Restoration & Repair

Almost no book is beyond repair, let us bring your volume back to life.

Specialist and traditional restoration and repair has been at the heart of our business for more than 30 years. Our bookbinders work by hand to preserve as much of the original binding as possible, and any new materials are carefully selected and crafted to ensure an authentic looking end result.

Each repair we do is completely different, and we cater for a variety of circumstances including water damage, fire damage, trauma, general aging, and even dog bites!

Our Process

1. Contact us to arrange a consultation for one of our bookbinders to appraise your binding. If you would prefer a remote consultation, we will ask you to email us detailed photos of the book and any damage you would like repairing, and one of our bookbinders will call you to discuss their initial assessment.

2. After a thorough appraisal of the binding, you will receive a quote and timeline for the project, after which you will be invited to pay online. 

3. After payment, our bookbinders will set to work carefully repairing your binding. Upon completion, you will be contacted to arrange collection or postage. 


Bible restoration and repair Manchester Walker Print

Case Study - 17th Century Bible Repair

Use the arrows to navigate through the restoration of a 17th Century Bible by one of our senior bookbinders.

family book restorer Manchester Walker Print Ltd

Step 1 - Removing the Cover

The book’s cover is carefully cut away, revealing the pages for further damage inspection.
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Step 2 - Individual Page Repairs

Each page is checked carefully for folds, tears and other blemishes then repaired with Japanese Mending Paper where necessary.
Book page restoration and repair Manchester

Step 3 - Neutralising Page pH Levels

In old books, acid can build up on the pages and cause damage. It is therefore important to neutralise it. Using a pH indicator, the Book’s pages are checked for the effects of acidity and a neutralising agent with a Calcium buffer solution is applied to the pages as appropriate, restoring the pH to a neutral level and maintaining it there for years to come.
Book restoration

Step 4 - Traditionally Preparing the Leather

With the book block now repaired, a suitable piece of newly sourced Calfskin leather is prepared and pasted to the book’s new cover in the traditional manner.
Book restoration Manchester

Step 5 - Case Making

The book is now gathered between pH-neutral boards and covered in the new piece of Calfskin, once the Calfskin has been turned in and mitred, all the turnings on the face sides and face edges are moulded and shaped.
Bookbinding manchester

Step 6 - Drying Stage

The book is placed between neutral pH greyboards to assist in the drying process. It is then left to settle for two days.
Bookbinder Manchester

Step 7 - Book Joint Sharpening

The book’s joints are now ‘sharpened up’ by hand and put under tension with a Sizel string.
Bookbinders manchester restoration and repair

Step 8 - Setting the Head Caps

Now the tricky bit! Setting the head caps – this is where we stretch and mould the leather around the head of the book for protection.
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Step 11 - Moulding and Shaping by Hand

Shaping with a Cobbler’s Hammer.
book repair manchester Walker Print Ltd

Step 12 - Weighted Drying Stage

The book is placed between two pH neutral boards and placed under weight for two days while the glue dries.
Book restoration and repair manchester

Step 13 - End Papers

As the book is a fastback, a jointed end-paper is applied for ease-of-use and strength.
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Step 14 - Final Decoration

The Final Decoration – a new decoration is applied to the book which closely resembles the original in every way – in this case, the original ‘Cambridge Window’ design is reproduced and an antique roll closest to the original design is sourced and used to roll a design into the newly dampened leather of the front and back covers. The bookbinder has to extert a lot of pressure through the hand detailing tool to create the decorative edge, this requires a lot of skill and precision.
Bible repair Manchester Walker Print Ltd

Step 15 - The Finished Cambridge Window

Cambridge Window completed with the exquisite tooling design around the edges of the book.

The Completed Repair

The final Magnum Opus…. fully restored, de-acidified and preserved by Walker Print bookbinders for many years to come!

 Contact Us 

Contact Us

Working Hours

Monday10:00 AM — 5:00 PM
Tuesday10:00 AM — 5:00 PM
Wednesday10:00 AM — 5:00 PM
Thursday10:00 AM — 5:00 PM
Friday10:00 AM — 4:00 PM


Walker Print Ltd.
Unit 7A
7 Hope Road
M25 9GX

0161 773 3297