Liz Jolly to be new Chief Librarian of the British Library

Liz Jolly, new Chief Librarian at the British Library.

The British Library has announced Liz Jolly as its new Chief Librarian, succeeding Caroline Brazier in the role. Liz brings to the Library more than 20 years’ experience in a variety of institutions in the university sector, most recently as Director of a converged Student and Library Services department at Teesside University. She takes up her new role at the Library on 24 September 2018.

Liz Jolly said: “It will be a privilege to join the British Library and I am delighted to have the opportunity of working in one of the UK’s leading cultural institutions at such an exciting time, and to build on the fantastic work of Caroline Brazier in ensuring that our intellectual heritage is available for all.

“I’m looking forward to collaborating with colleagues and partners in the development of our national library in a digital age and in delivering the Library’s ambition to be the most open, creative and innovative institution of its kind in the world.”

Liz joined Teesside University in 2008 and was Director of Library and Information Services from 2008 to 2017. Since joining Teesside she has been member of the University’s Senior Management Team and Academic Board and contributes to the strategic direction of the institution. She has delivered a number of transformational change projects including the professionalisation of library services, the creation of new types of learning and research spaces and the development of collections and content, working collaboratively with key stakeholders to enhance engagement with students, staff and the wider community.

Previously Liz was Associate Director (Services and Operations) in Information and Learning Services at the University of Salford and she has also held departmental senior management positions at the University of East London and at London South Bank University.

Liz is a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a Fellow both of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) and the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA). A former trustee of CILIP, she was Chair of SCONUL, the UK university library directors’ group, from 2014 to 2016.  She is currently chair of the Northern Collaboration, a group of twenty-seven higher education libraries in the North of England. Liz is a member of the Editorial Board of the New Review of Academic Librarianship and of the British Library Advisory Council.

Announcing the appointment, the British Library’s Chief Executive, Roly Keating said: “I'm absolutely delighted that Liz will be joining us as Chief Librarian. She is known across the sector not just for her wealth of hands-on library experience and expertise, but also as a passionate advocate for the values of the profession and the vital importance of libraries to society as a whole. Her leadership and vision will have a vital role to play as the British Library continues to grow its impact across the UK and the world, and I very much look forward to working with her.”


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The British Library is the national library of the United Kingdom and one of the world's greatest research libraries. It provides world class information services to the academic, business, research and scientific communities and offers unparalleled access to the world's largest and most comprehensive research collection. The Library's collection has developed over 250 years and exceeds 150 million separate items representing every age of written civilisation and includes books, journals, manuscripts, maps, stamps, music, patents, photographs, newspapers and sound recordings in all written and spoken languages. Up to 10 million people visit the British Library website - - every year where they can view up to 4 million digitised collection items and over 40 million pages.