Temporary reduced library services
The Society’s library is currently recruiting for 2 staff members (User Services Librarian and Serials Librarian).
There will therefore be reduced library services for 3 months until there is a full complement of staff.
Research visits: Research visits by Fellows will continue as usual during the Library’s normal opening times (Monday - Friday 10am - 5pm). Fellows wishing to consult material that needs retrieving by staff (manuscripts, archives, prints and drawings, and printed items on closed access) are asked to order material in advance.
External researcher visits will be limited to no more than 2 researchers per day and will be strictly by appointment only. Our Guidelines for Researchers on our website give information on how to make an appointment.
Image services: Our image services are suspended, and we will not be accepting requests for images and licences from the library and museum collections.
This does not affect the photocopying service.
Other library services to Fellows will operate as normal (book loans and electronic resources service)
Please check our website for dates of planned closures.
For 300 years the Library has been at the heart of the Society, helping to shape our understanding of the past.
The Library is the largest antiquarian library in the country, with an outstanding collection of more than 130,000 books dating from the fifteenth century to the present day, monograph series, approximately 3000 current and historic journal titles, manuscripts and archives, and prints and drawings.
It covers British and European archaeology, architectural history, art history and the decorative arts (especially medieval), the historic environment, and British local history. Its collection of county historical and archaeological publications is one of the most comprehensive in the country, as its collection of European journals.
Our special collections include 2,000 proclamations from 1464 to the mid-nineteenth century, 1,000 broadsides including a printed indulgence from 1513, the Lowther collection of Civil War tracts, the Fairholt Collection on pageantry, the Prattinton Collection on Worcestershire, the Jackson Collection on Wiltshire, the Willson Collection on Lincolnshire, the archives of the Society of Dilettanti and the Roxburghe Club Library.
You can explore highlighted objects from our collections with our 'Unlocking Our Collections' series.
Planned Library Closures
The Library will close at 4pm on Friday 24th May.
The Library will be closed on Monday 27th & Tuesday 28th May for Spring Bank Holiday.
The library will be closed to visitors from Monday 29th July until Monday 2nd September.