John Rylands Library
John Rylands Library
Visitor and event information
0161 275 3764
Visitor and Event enquiries
0161 306 0555
0161 275 3751
0161 834 5574
The John Rylands Library merged with Manchester University Library in 1972 to form the John Rylands University Library of Manchester.
The library is closed on Good Friday, Easter Sunday and between Christmas and New Year.
The John Rylands Library is a public library, open to everyone. Entry is free.
The Library's collections are open to Readers aged 18 and over. However, to look at special material, a letter of reference is required.
The special collections and Manchester Medical Society Library are Designated Collections of national importance.
The special collections represent an outstanding national and regional resource, combining material of international significance with collections directly relevant to the history and wider impact of Manchester and the North West. The Manchester Medical Society Library contains medical printed books dating between c. 1800-1950, associated with the Manchester Medical Society.
Social History, Literature, Archives
Key artists and exhibits
- Methodist Archives and Research Centre
- Labour History Archive and Study Centre
- Designated Collection
The self-portraits of Li Yuan-chia
- 5 December 2013 12-1pm *on now
From a Chinese village to a Cumbrian garden, come and learn more about Chinese photographer Li Yuan-chia’s self-portraits.
11th Rylands Poetry Reading
- 5 December 2013 6-7pm *on now
For this year’s annual Rylands Poetry Reading, we are delighted to welcome Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin, one of Ireland’s leading contemporary poets.
- 6 December 2013 4-9:30pm
Join us for an alternative seasonal celebration! Explore our building and collections, take part in creative workshops, come along and revel in our alternative Christmas. Our Café will be open offering seasonal treats throughout the evening.
Unusual Views: Library tours for photographers
- 7 December 2013 2:30-3:30pm
Take the opportunity to photograph the Library building from spectacular viewpoints not normally open to the public!
Morbid Miscellany curator tour
- 7 December 2013 2-3pm
Meet the curator of Morbid Miscellany, and get the chance to see some freaky things which didn’t make it into the cases… (Most suitable for adults and older children, 12+)
Machiavelli the bandit and the writing of The Prince
- 7 December 2013 1-2pm
On the 500th anniversary of Machiavelli’s writing of The Prince we will examine the production and reception of this infamous text, drawing on the rich Italian collections in the Library.
Here be Dragons
- 7 December 2013 12-1pm
The walls and ceilings of the Library are full of strange and mysterious creatures – join our tour to seek them out! This tour is most suitable for families with children aged 5-10.
- Family friendly
Camp as Christmas
- 8 December 2013 12-2pm
Join the Polari Mission artists for an afternoon of bona baubles and fantabulosa yule cards with dowry glitter!
Picturing Stories - curator tour
- 11 December 2013 1-2pm
Join the curators of Picturing Stories for a tour of the exhibition.