16 October 2012

Living London: The British Library

If, dear blog reader, you've been reading my blog for awhile, first of all Thank You. Secondly it's probably fairly obvious that I'm a bookworm. The other day I wandered into the English book mecca - the British Library. According to the official website, you can explore 14 million books, 920,000 journal and newspaper titles, 58 million patents, 3 million sound recordings, and much more. Find what you need - in the arts and humanities, sciences, or any subject.

It's a cool building in itself, full of nooks and crannies, small tables, cafes and the ubiquitous gift shop. It's made up of a large foyer and several levels of cafes, labs and reading rooms, all surrounding a central column of protected texts which only the librarians have access to, but makes the most impressive bookshelves I think I've ever seen.

They are always having exhibitons of their books and manuscripts too, at the time of writing, hosting the Jack Kerouac, On The Road scroll... (stay tuned tomorrow folks)

The British Library is absoloutely free (except the tempting cafes may rip a hole in your pocket) and if you have a specific research subjet you can register as a reader to use the rooms. Hundreds of student haunt the library - it's quiet and if you can grab a table, you can plug your laptop in & use the WiFi.


  1. I work near the British Library and love having lunch in the piazza during the summer. I've been to exhibitions and use their gift shop a lot but have wandered no further. I keep meaning to but feel a bit shy!

  2. The Piazza is beautiful, and in the sunshine I bet it's great! I took a leaf out of a friends book and figured that I would go for a wander until they kicked me out; they have so many people coming & going that no-one said anything really. The cafes look cool, but most of the books are under lock & key unless you are a research student - but there again I didn't search super far.
    (Sorry about the delayed reply!)

  3. The British library has quite a large public area with exhibitions of historic books.. i want to visit this library when i come with paradise tours nyc. but how i visit it because my friend tell me that it is not tourist place or attraction.and how i can get membership of this library?


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