Our collections are a rich resource for understanding British life from the post-War period to the present day. They span the range of published formats, as well as manuscripts, archives and sound recordings.

Collection guides

Reading Room  Paul Grundy

St Pancras Reading Rooms

At St Pancras we have 11 Reading Rooms, each specialising in a different subject area or type of material and with different opening hours. In our Reading Rooms you can:

  • Consult books, journals and other items from our collections
  • Access a wide range of electronic resources and electronic journals
  • Consult subject guides, bibliographies and other research aids

If you need help, please ask our Reference Specialists at the enquiry desks or contact the Reference Service.

We offer a range of free Reader sessions and 1-2-1 consultations to help you make the best use of the Library's collections.

You’ll need a Reader Pass

Opening hours for all Reading Rooms

Case studies

More Case studies
…The UK Web Archive is a fantastic resource for researchers…

Neema used the UK Web Archive to explore how ethnic minorities voted in the EU Referendum.

…Working with the British Library has enabled me to get my research out there beyond academia.…

How smartphones are changing storytelling: Alastair Horne, PhD student.

…To create an archive which will be part of the Library is really a privilege…

Dvora is a collaborative PhD student exploring the social world of Crown Court clerks from the 1970s onwards.

Library experts

Jeremy Jenkins

Curator, Emerging Media, Contemporary British Publications

Jonnie Robinson

Lead Curator, Spoken English

Mary Stewart

Lead Curator, Oral History, and Director of National Life Stories

Stephen Cleary

Lead Curator, Literary and Creative Recordings

More staff members

Blog posts

What content should I nominate on the UEFA Women’s Euro to the UK Web Archive?

Wednesday, June 29, 2022

By Helena Byrne, Curator of Web Archives, British Library The UEFA Women's Euro 2022 competition is taking place across England from July 6 to July 31, 2022. We are collecting websites about the 2022 UEFA Women’s EURO from around the...

Putting 'AIDS: The Unheard Tapes' in context

Monday, June 27, 2022

Mary Stewart, Lead Curator of Oral History, gives more information on the interviews used in a new BBC documentary series. Broadcast tonight on BBC2 is the first in a three-part documentary series entitled AIDS: The Unheard Tapes (27 June, 9.30pm...

Breaking the News - News collections in the Web Archive

Wednesday, June 15, 2022

By Jason Webber, Web Archive Engagement Manager, British Library The British Library is currently running the wonderful ‘Breaking the News’ exhibition. If you’ve not seen it yet, make sure you check it out. It is open until Sun 21 Aug...

Recording of the week: More than a headteacher

Monday, June 13, 2022

This week's selection comes from Sandra Agard, Learning Facilitator. 'More than a headteacher' is how cousins Michelle Campbell-Davies and Rachel Clarke describe Betty Campbell, or Nan, as they knew her, in their chat recorded for The Listening Project to mark...

More blog posts

Projects

Emerging Formats

This project builds our ability to collect publications designed for mobile devices that respond to reader interaction or are structured as databases.

Save our Sounds

Save our Sounds is our programme to preserve the nation’s sound heritage.

Michael Marks Awards for Poetry Pamphlets

The Michael Marks Awards support innovation in UK poetry.

Know Your Place - West of England

A crowd-sourcing digital mapping project funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund

All projects