The British Library is the national library of the United Kingdom and the largest library in the world by number of items catalogued. The library is for research purposes only. It holds about 170 million items from many countries, in many languages and in both print and digital formats: books, manuscripts, journals, newspapers, magazines, sound and music recordings, videos, play-scripts, patents, databases, maps, stamps, prints, drawings.
The British Library has about 14 million books and substantial holdings of manuscripts and historical items dating back as far as 2000 BC.
Everyone is welcome to view the display of important historical manuscripts and books in the Sir John Ritblatt Gallery.
The British Library puts on large exhibitions every year. Opening hours for the exhibitions are Monday to Thursday 09.30-8.00 and Friday – 9.30-6.00 Saturday – 9.30-5.00. Sunday – 11.00-5.00.
It is free to visit the Sir John Ritblatt Gallery. There is an admission charge (with concessions) for the exhibitions.