It boasts an outstanding collection of more than 150,000 books, journals and pamphlets on a wide range of subjects but specialising in our core subject areas of Theology and Religion, Literature and Literary Culture, and History and Politics. Although our holdings are strongest in the long nineteenth century (usually defined as 1789-1914), this unique collection is kept up-to-date with the latest publications which readers can browse on the open shelves.
The heart of the Library is Gladstone's own collection of over 32,000 items. Many of his books contain his annotations, some of which are extremely detailed. In addition to his books, the Library houses most of Gladstone's non-political correspondence, speeches, and papers, as well as the Glynne-Gladstone Manuscript Archive. Since 2016 Gladstone's papers can be read here at Gladstone's Library. We also carry a number of distinctive collections and archives, including the Bishop Moorman Franciscan Collection, the Islamic Faith and Culture Collection, the Exploring Capitalism Collection, the Richard L. Hills History of Technology Collection, the Re:defining Liberalism Collection, the Francis Collection, the West Collection, and the archive of theologian Don Cupitt.