Keeping everyone safe

Exterior of the British Library with a 'Good to go' logo

We’re working hard to make sure everyone can visit us safely, and ask everyone to wear a face covering while they’re here.

We recommend pre-booking to visit our galleries and for our events in St Pancras, but you don’t need to book to visit the Reading Rooms at either of our sites.

Plan your visit

Check our opening hours before you book.

Find out more about pre-booking:

Keeping everyone safe

  • You must wear a face covering in our shops and Reading Rooms, unless you’re exempt
  • We’re asking everyone to wear a face covering in our galleries and public spaces, especially when speaking with staff and other users or in a crowded place
  • You’re free to explore the Library without a one-way system. Please take care and respect everyone’s space as you move around the building
  • Our toilets are open with regular, enhanced cleaning.  All our spaces are regularly cleaned and you’ll find hand sanitiser stations throughout the Library

  • We’ve removed a few interactive elements in our exhibitions to reduce contact. Don’t worry, there will still be plenty to see. Please don’t touch the display cases

  • If you feel unwell or anyone in your household is showing symptoms of COVID-19, please don’t come to the Library. You can reschedule your booked visit by emailing boxoffice@bl.uk

Thank you for being considerate of others and keeping everyone safe while you’re here.

On the day 

  • Our Piazza will be open to everyone, so you can enter by any gate and make your way to the main entrance
  • You’ll still need to pass through security and they may need to check your bag but will do so with minimal contact
  • You can bring small bags into the Library, and our Cloakroom and Lockers will be open if you need to use them. We don’t have space for big bags or luggage, so please don’t bring these
  • Our shops are all open, as well as Origin Coffee on Euston Road and in our Entrance Hall, and the Terrace Restaurant on Floor 1
  • Breastfeeding is welcome in any part of the building, but if you would prefer a private space please let a member of staff know
  • If you’re coming to an event in our Knowledge Centre Theatre you can enter by any gate, and the Knowledge Centre has its own entrance opposite the Last Word café. If you’re coming to a Late, please enter through the main entrance.

If you have a disability or access requirements

  • Please let us know before you visit by emailing accessibility@bl.uk
  • When you arrive, make yourself known to Security staff who will arrange assistance 
  • If you will be accompanied by an assistant or carer, they will also need a Reader Pass to use our Reading Rooms
  • Find out more about accessibility at the Library

Need help?

Our Customer Services team can be reached by email at boxoffice@bl.uk or 01937 546546.

Data Protection and Track and Trace

In addition to collecting contact details as part of our normal booking process, we will also be recording the times that users enter and leave our premises in order to reduce the risk of a local outbreak of coronavirus.

In line with guidance issued by the Department for Health and Social Care, we will keep these details for 21 days. We will share your contact details with Test and Trace personnel, if asked, in the event of a fellow user or staff member testing positive for coronavirus.

Your data will be kept secure and handled in line with ethical standards and the Data Protection Act at every stage of the process – from its collection and storage by us to its transfer and use by NHS Test and Trace. NHS Test and Trace will handle all data according to the highest ethical and security standards and it will be used only for NHS care, management, evaluation and research.

The Library’s Privacy Policy can be found on our website.

We're good to go

We’ve been awarded the Industry Standard mark which means we are following government and industry COVID-19 guidelines to maintain cleanliness and aid social distancing.