Readers at desks in the Newsroom at the British Library

The Newsroom is on the second floor at St Pancras and has a wealth of information and resources to help you in your research.

We are the enquiry point for all of the Library's Newspaper collections. Here you can view microfilm, online databases and original Newspapers covering the 17th to 21st Century. Microfilm is held on-site whereas a number of original Newspapers are held off-site and take 48 hours to be retrieved.

In the Newsroom you can:

  • View our extensive open access collection material
  • Access online databases and electronic journals
  • Use our catalogues to order items from our extensive reference collection.

Reference enquiries

If you need help, ask our Reference Specialists at the Enquiry Desk. They can:

  • Guide you to the most appropriate material for your research
  • Advise you on how to access and use our printed and electronic collections most effectively.
  • Help you to use our catalogues and answer your bibliographic enquiries
  • Suggest other libraries, archives and institutions that you might find useful in your research, or guide you to relevant websites and free online resources
  • Provide a range of free Reader sessions and 1-2-1 consultations to help you find your way around the collections and to make the best use of them.

If your enquiry requires more specialist help than we can provide we will forward your enquiry to the appropriate person in the British Library or suggest alternative sources.

If you are unable to visit you can contact the News Reference Team directly, use our Quick Chat service, or get in touch via Twitter.

Items on shelves in this Reading Room 

  • UK national newspapers on microfilm
  • Press directories from 1846 onwards including Benns and Willings
  • Indexes to publications e.g. The Times, New York Times and the Chicago Tribune
  • Access to special collections e.g. Tuskegee Institute News Clippings File
  • Reference books with information relating to News Media and Journalism


Researching newspapers

Find information and published subject indexes for newspapers in our collection.

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