Using Special Collections at the John Rylands Research Institute and Library

When you arrive at the Library the staff on the ground-floor Reception Desk will welcome you and direct you to our Reading Room.

You may take personal belongings and items you require for your research (eg. notepads, pencils, laptops and cameras) into the reading room but any bags or coats must be deposited in a locker. Our staff will assist you with this.

Special Collections items will be issued to you at the Issue Desk. We will provide you with book-rests, weights and nitrile gloves as appropriate.

We will explain how to use them if you are unsure. We can also provide more specialist equipment including a microscope, fibre-optic light sheet and UV lamp.

Staff are always on hand to help - please don't be afraid to ask! We want your visit to be as enjoyable and productive as possible.

Opening hours

Researchers can book appointments to access material in the Special Collections Reading Room at the John Rylands Research Institute and Library.

Appointments are available:

  • Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays between 10am and 4pm.

Limited spaces are available, and you must give a minimum of one week's notice when booking an appointment.

Find us

The Special Collections Reading Room is in the Historic Reading Room of the John Rylands Research Institute and Library.

Digital appointments

You can book a digital appointment to view a small amount of Special Collections material held at the John Rylands Research Institute and Library or the Main Library via a Zoom call. You must give a minimum of one week's notice when booking an appointment. 

Appointments are available:

  • For collections held at the Rylands: Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays between 10am and 4pm.
  • For collections held at the Main Library: Tuesdays and Thursdays between 10am and 4pm.

For enquiries about digital appointments and to discuss your requirements, please contact us. 

Contact us

For any enquiries relating to our Special Collections, please contact us.

Privacy Notice

We will collect and store your personal data in line with the Special Collections Privacy Notice: