British Library

British Library
96 Euston Road
London
Greater London
NW1 2DB
England

Website

www.bl.uk

E-mail

Visitor Enquiries

visitor-services@bl.uk

Telephone

Visitor Services

020 7412 7332

Events Box Office

01937 546546

Fax

Visitor Information (fax)

020 7412 7340

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.
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The British Library is the national library of the United Kingdom, and one of the world's greatest libraries. Set up in 1973, with galleries formerly in the British Museum building, it moved to its spectacular flagship new home at St Pancras in Central London in 1997.

The John Ritblat Gallery: Treasures of the British Library, PACCAR Gallery of Living Words and the Workshop of Words, Sound and Images offer permanent displays and a changing programme of special thematic exhibitions. We also have the best permanent display of stamps and philately in the world.

The King's Library, housed in a 17-metre glass-walled tower at the heart of the building, plus a number of major works of art, can be seen by all visitors. The Library also offers a wide programme of events, including talks, music and discussions, all developing themes and ideas associated with the collections.

Venue Type:

Archive, Library, Gallery

Opening hours

Mon, Wed-Fri 0930-1800
Tues 0930-2000
Sat 0930-1700
Sun and English Public Holidays 1100-1700

Closed: 24 - 28 December
1 January
Closing at 17.00 23 and 29 - 31 December

Admission charges

FREE ENTRY to the Library

Major exhibitions are charged
Permanent Treasures Gallery FREE

The British Library is custodian of the most important research collection in the world, spanning almost 3,000 years and every continent. This covers books, journals, manuscripts, stamps, patents, sound recordings, printed music and maps.

The John Ritblat Gallery is home to a permanent exhibition of over 200 of the Library's most significant items. These include the Codex Sinaiticus (c. 350), Magna Carta (1215), the Gutenberg Bible (1455), and Shakespeare's First Folio (1623) as well as religious, literary, historical and musical works in the handwriting of Leonardo da Vinci, Lord Nelson, Lewis Carroll, Handel, Sir Paul McCartney and many others.

The award-winning Turning the Pages was developed by the Library and uses high quality digitised images to simulate actually turning the pages of a precious book. The PACCAR Gallery is home to temporary exhibitions. The Workshop of Words, Sound and Images is an interactive gallery which traces the story of book production and sound recording.

Collection details

World Cultures, Social History, Science and Technology, Religion, Personalities, Music, Literature, Decorative and Applied Art, Archives

Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
Illustration of a gothic scene showing skeletons and ghouls rising from a church cemetery

Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination

  • 3 October 2014 — 27 January 2015 *on now

In October 2014 the British Library will stage the UK’s most comprehensive show of Gothic literature yet. Marking 250 years since the genre burst into undead life with the publication of Horace Walpole’s The Castle of Otranto, Terror and Wonder will explore the enduring influence it has had, not just on literature, but film, fashion, music and art ever since.

The exhibition will explore how literary greats, such as Ann Radcliffe and Horace Walpole, broke conventions with 18th century gothic masterpieces, paving the way for some of the most imaginative minds of literature, from Mary Shelley and Bram Stoker to Mervyn Peake and Angela Carter.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

Adult Gift Aid* £11.00
Adult £10.00
Senior 60+ Gift Aid* £9.00
Senior 60+ £8.00
Student/Registered Unemployed/Disabled £5.00
Disabled Carer Free
Under 18 Free
Friend of the British Library, Patron Free
National Art Pass Adult £5.00
National Art Pass Senior 60+ £4.00

Website

http://www.bl.uk/whatson/exhibitions/index.html

Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.
Writer Jamie Rhodes

Raising the Dead: Tales of Untold Lives

  • 20 October 2014 6:30-7:30pm *on now

The British Library Untold Lives blog shares stories of people’s lives found in our collection, providing fascinating and unusual insights into the past and bringing out from the shadows lives that have been overlooked or forgotten. "Jamie Rhodes has mined and minted gold from the British Library archives. Inspired by sources as various as a ship's surgeon's log, verbatim interviews, diaries or even advertisements for false teeth, Rhodes gives us glimpses into unexpected places, the forgotten corners of history, in stories told with the authentic weirdness of truth; touching, quirky and humane." - Olivia Hetreed - Screenwriter, Girl with a Pearl Earring (film), Wuthering Heights (2011 film) - President of The Writers' Guild of Great Britain.

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

Price: £5, (£4 Over 60s) and £3

Susan Hill author of The Woman in Black

Susan Hill in conversation

  • 20 October 2014 6:30-8pm *on now

Susan Hill's novel The Woman in Black has sold millions of copies worldwide, been staged in the West End for 26 years, and was made into a film starring Daniel Radcliffe. Her latest, Printer's Devil Court is another haunting masterpiece.
Join us for this wide-ranging conversation. Part of a series of events in connection with the British Library's major exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination.

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£10, (£8 Over 60s) and £7

Website

http://www.bl.uk/whatson/events/event164433.html

Nightwalkers: Tales of Zombies, Duppies and Soucouyants

Nightwalkers: Tales of Zombies, Duppies and Soucouyants

  • 24 October 2014 6:30-7:45pm

This thunderous exploration of the disturbing, comedic and gothic tales of the ghosts, duppies, jumbies and conjure folk that haunt the Caribbean and the Americas is not for the faint-hearted. Not recommended for under-14s.

In partnership with The Crick Crack Club

Suitable for

  • 16-17
  • 18+

Admission

£8, (£6 Over 60s) and £5

Website

http://www.bl.uk/whatson/events/event165731.html

LATE at the Library: The Sorting

LATE at the Library: The Sorting

  • 31 October 2014 7:30-10:30pm

Good or evil? Sinner or saint? Angel or demon? Know your fate. Award winning theatre company, Les Enfants Terribles, joins us to create a funeral inspired experience featuring wonderfully macabre performances, live music, DJ’s, bar and a late night opening of the British Library's exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination.

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£15

Website

http://www.bl.uk/whatson/events/event165733.html

Resources listed here may include websites, bookable tours and workshops, books, loan boxes and more. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all.

Campaign! Make an Impact

http://www.bl.uk/campaign

This national cross-curricular programme uses history to inspire young people into active citizenship. Historical campaigns inspire and teach campaign skills, enabling children and young people to run their own campaigns about issues that affect them today. It’s based around a three step model on our website.
Students can explore campaign skills, and learn how campaigners have constructed their messages in creative ways. There is guidance on how to plan and carry out your campaign.

In the Teachers and Museums section you can find out more about how the model works and how your organisation can get involved.

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