"I believe I found the Formby bindery via a web search. It looked promising, their credentials seemed fine, so I sallied forth in the Autumn of 2011 to see the lie of the land for myself. Luckily the bindery is an easy drive from the house, and parking as yet, has not proved difficult. If I remember correctly, my first commission was for the re-spining of a quarto. I left it with them and a few weeks later was called to pick it up. I have, since that occasion, been a regular customer. There is seldom a time when I do not have some work to hand. The work, may be as simple as re-labelling books, or a complete dismantling & re-sewing of a (very) large folio; but whatever the nature of the job, I know that it will be done to the highest standards. On entry, I have Helen’s welcoming smile, always nice, we then quickly get down to discuss what work is to be done, what leather, the colour of the leather, spine decoration and so on, all of these details are carefully noted and I know that there will be no slip ups. The finished product, is in an excellent condition. I like to think that if I take an eighteenth century volume to Formby’s I will get back a book which should still be legible and well bound centuries after I am dead & gone. And that’s the key; the work here is of that standard that will shrug off the passing years. We are after all, only the curators of our libraries. And me? Have I ever had books done by other binders? The answer is yes, some of them pre-eminent. The work done at Ramsbottom is as good as any, and although the prices of the others bordered on the extortionate, to be fair, the overheads of a shop in the heart of the west end of London must be colossal, and the work was also outstanding. Finally, I will be tidying up my books for a few years yet, and my binder of choice will remain Cyril Formby"


"I am bowled over by your stunning binding of the editions of Blackburn Cathedral’s Music & More, which I collected this morning. They not only look so very handsome, so attractive, and so ‘pick-up-able’, but to have the editions within one cover (six volumes) seems to increase their attractiveness and readability. I just couldn’t put them down, and had to tear myself away to write this letter of thanks. Please know what unbounded delight your craftsmanship has created in my heart- which will be echoed by all the cathedral staff when I take these treasures to the cathedral tomorrow. There will be more binding from us in the near future!"


"As part of the team of "historians" at Portsmouth Football Club, I was entrusted with the task of getting a set of programs bound from each season. The club have bound volumes back to the 1920's but the more resent seasons had not been completed. Formby's at Ramsbottom were recommended to me about five years ago and since then they have provided a first class service, and at a very reasonable price. Despite being a long way from Portsmouth, I drop off the programs and pick up the finished volumes when Portsmouth are playing near their offices. The staff often go out of their way to help with this arrangement and have always delivered on time. The finished bound volumes look very good along side their older counterparts and help to form part of the Portsmouth FC archive of historical artefacts. Chris Gibbs (Part of Portsmouth FC Historians team)."

Chris Gibbs

""At Formbys we pride ourselves in offering a friendly, professional service, and will always go the extra mile to ensure that what we produce is of the highest standard", is in my opinion and experience certainly true. Jonathan Watson, Kirklees Bereavement Services."

Jonathan Watson