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Archives and collections | Library of Birmingham opening hours | Birmingham City Council

Archives and collections

The Archives and Collections service staff at the Library of Birmingham are working on recovery and reopening plans with a reduced service. These plans are in line with national government guidance and the government’s roadmap to recovery, taking into account local circumstances.

What have we been doing since 12 April?

Since 12 April we have been undertaking appointments for BCC officers, reconfiguring office and public spaces, and taking in deposits of new archival material that have been delayed over the last year.

What are we doing in May?

The next step from May is inviting in our customers whose appointments were cancelled at the end of 2020.

What are we planning for June?

Once we have worked through the cancellations backlog (we anticipate that this will take until early June to clear) there will be a limited number of appointments available in the Wolfson Centre for Archival Research on Wednesdays and Thursdays 11am to 4pm to view pre-ordered archive and local studies material. All appointments and item requests will need to be booked in advance via our online booking system.

As soon as we have a date to open up booking appointments in June we’ll update this page – it is dependent on working through the backlog and updated government guidance. Please keep checking the booking site where appointments will be released two weeks in advance on Mondays at 11am. Each appointment is for one person only on a first come, first served basis.

The Heritage Research Area will reopen on Tuesday 1 June for a limited number of appointments. Please email us for further details.

Please do not travel if you have not been able to book an appointment as you will not be allowed to enter the building.

Announcements about when specific services can reopen will be announced on the library services update page.


There are two main services you can use:

  • Heritage Research Area for printed local and family history, genealogy, maps, local newspapers
  • Wolfson Centre for Archival Research is the search room for archival collections, photographs, early printed material. Please note that an appointment is needed to use the Wolfson Centre. (A reader’s ticket is also required – please see our section on CARN tickets for details).