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Freedom of Information Publication Scheme

This page brings together publications relating to the structure of the Library, its organisation, and what we do.

  1. Who we are and what we do
  2. What we spend and how we spend it
  3. What are our priorities and how are we doing
  4. How we make decisions
  5. Our policies and procedures
  6. Lists and registers
  7. The services we offer

7. The Services We Offer

Information About Our Collections and Access to Them

Details of the British Library's Collections and Catalogues can be found via the links at the top of our website homepage.

Our Collections are available on our premises to all registered Readers of the British Library.



Details of our exhibitions and events programme.


Services for Which Fees Are Charged and Details of Those Charges

A list of the priced services available from the British Library together with our Pricing Policy and Pricing FAQs.


Opportunities for Volunteers

We offer a number of opportunities for gaining work experience:

  • Work experience – these are unpaid  1 – 2 week placements for young people of school age to learn about the workplace
  • Internships: these are generally work placements of between 3 and 12 months for those who have gone on to further or higher education from school. Interns are paid unless the intern is undertaking the placement as a compulsory element as part of a course of further education in which case they are not entitled . Some work placements are externally funded.
  • Volunteers – a number of former, generally retired British Library staff with specialist skills have returned to us as Voluntary Unpaid Assistants to help with work that is not funded by Grant In Aid.

Please contact with any enquiries.


Educational Services

The Library offers a wide range of education services for teachers and learners of all ages, as well as providing world class research facilities for the Higher Education sector.


Publications, Leaflets, Booklets and Newsletters

The Library's own publications can be found in our shop. Newsletters and email alerts are available from many of our specialised departments; please see the relevant departmental or service page for details.


Advice and Guidance

Please see our Collection Care pages for advice and guidance on how to preserving your own books as well as handling collection items.


Media Releases

Our online Press Room, with contact details, press releases and RSS feed.


Publications for the Purposes of Part 6 of the Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement Act 2007

The following manuscripts will be on display in the exhibition Magna Carta: Law, Liberty, Legacy from 13 March to 1 September 2015:


Jefferson’s Autograph Copy of the Declaration of Independence

The autograph copy of the United States Declaration of Independence (1776) is an ink on paper manuscript written by the American revolutionary and future American President, Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826). Its four pages of text are written on two sheets measuring 320 x 200 mm and 319 x 201 mm. It was drafted early in July 1776 in the days immediately following the acceptance of the Declaration of Independence by the Continental Congress on 4 July 1776.

  1. type of object: manuscript
  2. description of the material: paper
  3. identity and nationality of creators: Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826); American
  4. the title: Thomas Jefferson’s autograph copy of the United States Declaration of Independence (1776)
  5. dimensions: 320 x 200 mm and 319 x 201 mm
  6. date: 28 September 1789

The manuscript has been folded in four in the past and has some staining in the margins and along the folds. The manuscript also contains passages underlined in ink which denote sections of the Declaration that had been deleted from the version adopted by the Continental Congress.

Written in Philadelphia.

Jefferson’s autograph copy of the Declaration of Independence has been in the possession of the New York Public Library since 1896 when it was acquired as part of the collection of Dr Thomas Addis Emmet (1828–1919).


United States Bill of Rights

The copy of the United States Bill of Rights ratified by the state of Delaware is a single-sheet parchment manuscript that was drafted in ink in New York in September 1789 and ratified with signatures in ink and a seal on 28 January 1790.

  1. type of object: manuscript
  2. description of the material: parchment
  3. identity and nationality of creators: First United States Congress, New York, USA and the General Assembly of Delaware, USA
  4. the title: United States Bill of Rights ratified by the state of Delaware
  5. dimensions: 940 x 864 mm
  6. date: September 1789 and 28 January 1790

The Bill of Rights ratified by Delaware is written on only one side of the parchment and has the seal of the ‘General Assembly of Delaware’ attached to the bottom-left corner along with the signatures of George Mitchell and John Davis on behalf of the Council and Assembly. The signatures of John Beckly (1757–1807), James Otis (1725–1783), Frederick Augustus Muhlenberg (1750–1801), and John Adams (1735–1826) are also prominent towards the bottom of the document, which was drafted in iron gall ink.

The manuscript was prepared by the Senate Engrossing Clerk, Benjamin Bankson, for the First United States Congress in New York and signed and sealed by representatives in Delaware.

This copy of the Bill of Rights was ratified by Delaware in January 1790 before being immediately returned to the federal government. This copy therefore became a Federal Government record and was kept in the custody of the State Department until 1938 when, together with the other State Department records, it was transferred to the United States National Archives.

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