Library of Birmingham celebrates 10th anniversary

Published: Wednesday, 30th August 2023

We’re celebrating the life of libraries over 150 years in the city to mark the 10th anniversary of the Library of Birmingham.

Throughout September and October, visitors to the iconic building will be able to look back at some of the highlights of the last 10 years through an exhibition in the lobby; from Malala’s opening ‘Brummies’ speech, to the building being lit up in remembrance and celebration; from showcasing some of the city’s cultural treasures to being one of the centrepieces of the Commonwealth Games.

Saturday 2 September will see the Library of Birmingham filled with performance, music and activities as part of the Everything to Everybody Family Day.

Inspired by Birmingham’s historic Shakespeare Library and particularly the ‘Everything to Everybody’ ethos that inspired it, the day will be delivered in partnership with the University of Birmingham and local performers. With a strong emphasis on fun, engagement and participation, the event will tell visitors about the long history of public libraries in Birmingham and how they continue to inspire, support, and empower people today.

Cllr Saima Suleman, cabinet member for digital, culture, heritage and tourism, said: “Libraries are brilliant; open to everyone, they are a space where communities can connect with learning, creativity and culture as well as the sheer joy of reading.

“I do hope as many people as possible can come down to the family day and learn all about the amazing things libraries do and the services they provide, it may surprise you!”

Did you know about libraries in Birmingham…

  • Offer free activities to more than 50,000 children every year.
  • The Shakespeare Collection has more than 100,000 publications in nearly 100 languages – from Amharic to Zulu.
  • Every year, more than 5,000 people in choirs, bands, and orchestras loan sheet music from the Library of Birmingham.
  • The Map Room on the 4th floor of the Library of Birmingham includes highlights from more than 50,000 historic maps.
  • 15 Warm Welcome hubs have been set up at libraries around the city. Between December and March 150,000 people visited those libraries, 30% more than usual.
  • There are more than 12,000 books with information and advice on health and wellbeing in libraries across Birmingham.
  • Library of Birmingham’s distinctive façade of has a total of 5,357 interlocking circles. The large black circles are 5.4 metres in diameter, the smaller silver circles are 1.8 metres in diameter.



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