The story of Charlie Byrne’s starts in 1989, when Charlie began to sell quality secondhand books from a market stall in Galway’s Munster Avenue. By October 1989, he had leased a small shop on Dominick Street, and the bookshop had found its first home.
After three successful years in Dominick Street, Charlie decided to expand, and moved the bookshop to a larger, more central location in Middle Street. John O’Donohue, internationally-known spiritual writer, officiated the opening of the new shop. There, with the help of manager Vinny Browne and a number of devoted staff members, he created a bookshop with a unique recipe: a combination of secondhand titles, with carefully-selected bargain books. By 1996, the bookshop was nearly overflowing, so it relocated again: this time, it moved just across the road to Middle Street’s Cornstore Mall – a lovely space featuring labyrinthine corners, lots of browser-friendly nooks and crannies, and plenty of room for thousands of books.
Since 1996, Charlie Byrne’s has continued to expand, and today, the bookshop occupies a large part of the Cornstore, meandering across multiple floors and creating a warm, sprawling haven for book lovers.