Discover a magical world of books & Georgian splendour
As part of Heritage Open Days, the Leeds Library is delighted to offer free tours giving you a behind-the-scenes look at one of the city’s oldest-surviving buildings and its treasure-trove of rare books. An exhibition will also be on display in the foyer throughout Heritage Open Day week exploring the creativity of library members and partners we have worked with.
The Leeds Library is the oldest-surviving members’ subscription library in the UK. Founded in 1768, the Library moved to its current purpose-built premises on Commercial Street in 1808, and many original features remain in this much-loved home.
From the Georgian splendour of the Main Room, with its Victorian sunlight burners, to the labyrinthian basement deep under Commercial Street, there is an unexpected treasure around every corner. And you never know, you may even meet the Library’s ghost…
Free tours take place on the second and fourth Saturday of the month from 11am – 12pm, and the last Thursday of the month from 6pm – 7pm with a paid bar, to kick off your Thursday night.
A note about accessibility – Unfortunately, our Grade II* listed building is not currently fully accessible. We have a stair lift from the ground floor foyer to the first floor but are unable to install a through-floor lift due to the building’s historic status. Please email us on firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions around access, and we will do everything that we can to accommodate you.
The Leeds Library is committed to making its building and collections accessible to everyone in our current capital building works project The Next Chapter Project. To find out more, please visit the website HERE.