Covid 19 and the Reading Rooms

Covid 19 and the Reading Rooms

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Gladstone's Library, including its Reading Rooms, closed in March 2020 and will not be re-opening until Spring 2021. We've been working to make our Grade-1 listed Reading Rooms more secure and socially distanced with a raft of measures, including:

 - the creation of a new closed store. This holds all our rare and valuable items, including the majority of our nineteenth-century texts. This allows for greater security and more effective quarantine of items which cannot withstand chemical cleaning;

 - a new way of getting around the Reading Rooms, minimising the contact between library users;

 - new technology, including self-scan entry. Please talk to Reading Room staff about having a new, barcoded library card issued;

 - a new public work room. The old public access computers have been retired in favour of a cleaner, more flexible space;

 - slightly adjusted opening times, allowing Gladstone's Library staff to better monitor our spaces and users. We also ask all library users to carefully read the requirements for entry, particularly if you wish to consult specific texts which may have been moved to closed store.

As always, all changes have been made in consultation with UK best practice in libraries and archives, including discussion with our nearest professional peers, the Independent Libraries Association. And we welcome your thoughts, too: please email with any notes and queries.