Five libraries to explore across the UK
- 11 October 2017
To celebrate National Libraries Week, we pick five of the richest and culturally significant libraries to visit across the UK.
- Free to all
The collections span the centuries from early times to the digital age, housing millions of books, manuscripts, music and maps covering virtually every subject. They chart the global and historical influence of Scots at home and abroad, while also recording and reflecting the ideas and cultures of the world. There is a regular programme of free exhibitions and displays throughout the year and a comprehensive events programme.
Established as an independent institution in 1973, the British Library is the largest library in the world, with well over 150 million items in its collection. In addition to newly published books, the library is home to several manuscripts of historic significance, from Beowulf to Magna Carta. These and others are on display to the general public at the library's Sir John Ritblat Gallery, which is open daily with no admission charge. The museum also has an exciting exhibitions programme, which draws upon its own collections and loans from elsewhere.
- Free to all
Combining more than 30 different divisions, the Bodleian is the largest university library system in the UK. The Old Bodleian is also a major visitor attraction, drawing over 300,000 visitors a year with its programme of temporary exhibitions.