Built in shelves- alcove Plus

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A friend is planning on a refurb of her front terraced room.

The idea is to first fill the alcoves on each side of the chimney breast with shelves for books. She has tons of books and dislikes the premade type of bookshelves.

So I was thinking of a decent ply that was edged on the front and either battens screwed to the side walls and back, or possibly spur type shelving? Is there an alternative like bookcase strip that would cope with a load?
Could a piece of of ply be fitted to the side walls, channelled to accept bookcase strip?

Ideas for other walls? would it be an idea to make some kind of bookcase frame to match the alcove ones?
open to any ideas!
 
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And use some nice wood- depending how deep your alcoves are PSE always looks good, if you need deeper than 170mm or so then T& G floorboards glued together also work (use a router to finish the face edge)
 
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lack of circulating air in alcoves can lead to excessive condensation - esp where an outside wall (esp a solid wall) is concerned.
the effect is similar to where wardrobes are close to outside walls and the clothes inside the wardrobe become slimy.

carefully pre-check the walls and skirting of the alcoves for any damp signs.
make sure the chimney flue has been swept .
 
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