mobile menu decorative search icon decorativeSearch the site

Self-guided visits

Statue of John Rylands

Our free tours or workshops aren't compulsory, and you are welcome to bring your group or class to visit the Library on a 'self-guided' basis.

So that your visit runs smoothly we suggest you:


[Green man]

The Art of Pencil Sketching

Cost: Free
Duration: Variable
Suitable for: Y7 to A-Level

Are you looking for a unique and inspiring place to bring your art students for sketching?  

Then look no further than The John Rylands Library.  We have a wealth of stone and wood carvings, Art Nouveau metalwork, plaster ceiling designs, statues and stained glass windows to keep artists busy.

An information sheet is available to view or download as a PDF:

The Art of Pencil Sketching - Teacher Info Sheet 03-2016.pdf

[Historic staircase]

Explorer trail

Cost: Free
Duration: Variable
Suitable for: Variable

Help your pupils learn about The John Rylands Library’s history, architecture and collections with this trail. Open-ended questions are included to encourage observation and discussion. The trail does not involve any writing.

The trail may be followed independently by students, ideally working in small groups. Younger KS2 children may need adult help reading some of the text. Please remember that children under 16 years must be supervised by an adult at all times during their visit to the Library.

If you would like to use the trail let us know when you return a Education Booking Form - Self Programmed.dotx and we will arrange for copies of the trail to be available at the reception desk in the entrance to the Library.

If you would like to preview the trail, or use it on a mobile device, you can download a PDF version: Explorer Trail for schools and colleges.pdf