STAFF at a new city centre bookshop are "mindblown" after being named one of the best in the UK.

Script Haven on Worcester's High Street has been named the third best bookshop in the UK by The Times - and they have only been open five months.

The bookshop cafe offers a platform for authors and artists, unique gifts, a café, second-hand book exchange and a community hub for various Worcestershire organisations. 

Leena Batchelor, owner and former Worcestershire Poet Laureate, said she is still trying to process the news and said the coveted title is thanks to all her committed customers.

Worcester News:  A look inside the third-best book shop in the UK. A look inside the third-best book shop in the UK. (Image: Script Haven)"I was delighted even to get recognised out of hundreds of bookshops, so just to be known is phenomenal. 

"Then to be number three on the list is mindblowing. All sorts of things were going through my mind, like, is this real?

"Our customers voted for us, and it is a testament to how valuable and important the space is - it is an absolute privilege to provide this."

Since opening, Ms Batchelor said the business has been incredibly busy and now supports 150 authors and artists.

"I had hoped we would have reached maybe 100 in 12 months," she added.

"We had aimed to be at this point in eight to twelve months and are here now (in terms of popularity).

"It is a lovely surprise, and it is great we are at this point."

The immense popularity of the store has led the team to launch a crowdfunding appeal as major changes are needed to the venue to fit the growing demand.

The fundraiser can be found here.

The shop will need to install permanent bookcases and relocate the coffee counter to provide space for customers.

Flooring in the store also needs to be redone as the current laminate flooring is not fit for purpose. 

"I would like to say thank you to all my customers who have been wonderful and we hope to be here for a very long time," she said.

"Many organisations are using the space like those teaching sign language and mental health groups.

"We want to bring the magic of creativity into people's lives, and to be able to do that is wonderful.

"If we can improve the space then we can improve local community and therefore Worcester."