The Women's Library

Photograph of The Women's Library
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The Women's Library is a cultural centre housing the most extensive collection of women's history in the UK. As well as the Reading Room there is a lively exhibition and events programme. Access is free and open to everyone.

The entire collection of this library is a Designated Collection of national importance.

Venue Type:

Library, Archive

Opening hours

Monday to Friday: 10.30 am to 5pm

Admission charges


The entire collection of the Women's Library is a Designated Collection of national importance.

The Women’s Library is the oldest and most extensive collection of women's history in Europe, unrivalled in scope. The library charts the changes in women’s lives in the UK across the last 150 years, telling the history of activism from the campaigner’s perspective.

We are a cross-domain cultural resource providing a single point of access to Printed Collections containing over 60,000 books and pamphlets dating from 1592 including first editions and rare items; over 3,000 periodicals dating from 1745 ranging from popular magazines to academic quarterlies; and unique ephemera from over 4,000 women’s organisations; Archives - over 500 personal and organisational archives dating from 1770, including records of societies and associations, and research and oral history projects archives; Museum Collections containing over 7,000 objects dating from 1786 including banners, badges, photographs, posters, and postcards.

Collection details

Social History, Religion, Photography, Personalities, Medicine, Literature, Law and Order, Film and Media, Decorative and Applied Art, Costume and Textiles, Archives

Key artists and exhibits

  • arts
  • beauty
  • biography
  • domestic violence
  • education
  • employment
  • family and the home
  • feminism
  • health
  • Holloway Prison
  • motherhood
  • law
  • lesbian
  • literature
  • media
  • medicine
  • peace
  • politics
  • prostitution
  • religion
  • sexuality
  • sport
  • travel
  • family history
  • votes for women
  • women's campaigning
  • women's institutes
  • women's suffrage
  • women's liberation movement
  • Millicent Garrett Fawcett
  • Emmeline Pankhurst
  • Sheila Rowbotham
  • Josephine Butler
  • Emily Wilding Davison
  • archive
  • diary
  • letters
  • badges
  • banners
  • posters
  • photographs
  • postcards
  • women's magazines
  • zines
  • Designated Collection

The Women's Library
LSE Library
10 Portugal Street
Greater London



General enquiries

Reading Room enquiries

Space hire enquiries

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.