The ABA has introduced a new type of membership to be known as Associate Membership. At £120 a year – or £10 a month – it represents an ideal opportunity for booksellers at all levels to join the ABA at modest cost.
There are three main categories of eligibility. The first is for newer booksellers who have been buying and selling books for at least two years, but are not yet qualified for full membership under our five-year rule. Booksellers in this group will be offered help from the ABA in developing their skills through mentoring schemes and will be eligible for ABA grants and bursararies to attend the London Rare Books School and other courses. They will also have full access to the large ABA reference library.
As this is a form of probationary membership, members in this group will obviously not have all the rights of full membership, but will nevertheless appear under their own heading in the ABA directory and on the ABA website, be encouraged to advertise themselves as Associate Members, and to exhibit at domestic ABA bookfairs (subject to there being space available, as there often is, not required by Full Members). If they wish, they can have a feature article about themselves on the website and in the ABA Newsletter. They will also be fully entitled to benefit from the various ABA schemes relating to credit card charges, insurance and so on. Furthermore, they will also become eligible (and expected) to move on to full membership after four years in bookselling rather than the usual five.
The second group of booksellers eligible to take up Associate Membership are booksellers who have been in the trade for at least two years and are currently working with or for existing ABA members, but who would like to be part of the ABA and to have a voice in its affairs in their own right, to receive their own copies of newsletters and bulletins, to have their own personal professional recognition and accreditation from their professional body, their own name in the ABA directory and on the website, etc. Associate Members in this group would also be given the help with the training opportunities outlined above. They would also naturally translate to a fast-tracked full membership were they to leave their employment at some future stage and set up independently.
The third chief group eligible for Associate Membership are overseas booksellers already affiliated to the International League of Antiquarian Booksellers (ILAB) through membership of their own national association. This will enable those with historic ties to the ABA or with strong business connections in the United Kingdom to form a closer part of our community at a very modest cost.
The principal requirement of membership at any level is a willingness to embrace and abide by the ABA’s stringent Code of Good Practice. If you trade in antiquarian, rare or second-hand books, or associated materials such as manuscripts, ephemera, antique maps and prints, photographs, etc., and are interested in becoming an Associate Member – or indeed a Full Member if you have been trading for five years or more – then contact the ABA Office at:
Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association, 6 Bell Yard, London WC2A 2JR
Tel: 020 7439 3118 - Fax: 020 7439 3119 - email: firstname.lastname@example.org.