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Library of Birmingham, Birmingham

4.2
#6 of 274 in Things to do in Birmingham
Library Traveler Resource
The Library of Birmingham is a public library in Birmingham, England. It is situated on the west side of the city centre at Centenary Square, beside the Birmingham Rep (to which it connects, and with which it shares some facilities) and Baskerville House. Upon opening on 3 September 2013, it replaced Birmingham Central Library. The library, which is estimated to have cost £188.8 million, is viewed by the Birmingham City Council as a flagship project for the city's redevelopment. It has been described as the largest public library in the United Kingdom, the largest public cultural space in Europe, and the largest regional library in Europe. 2,414,860 million visitors came to the library in 2014 making it the 10th most popular visitor attraction in the UK.HistoryBackgroundBirmingham City Council looked into relocating the library for many years. The original plan was to build a new library in the emerging Eastside district, which had been opened up to the city centre following the demolition of Masshouse Circus. A library was designed by Richard Rogers on a site in the area. However, for financial reasons and reservations about the location this plan was shelved. The Council suggested that the Library be split between a new building built between the Rep Theatre and Baskerville House at Centenary Square, which until 2009 was a public car park (to house the main lending library) and a building at Millennium Point in "Eastside" (to house the archives and special collections).
By using our Birmingham vacation builder, you can arrange your visit to Library of Birmingham and other attractions in Birmingham.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
2,797 reviews
Google
4.1
TripAdvisor
  • An innovative an exciting building with great views, interesting spaces and the odd sleeping student. watch out for late opening and check out the Shakespeare room.  more »
  • Love this place. Don't think you just have to be a book geek to enjoy this place. It's just a great place to visit  more »
  • Must place to visit in Brum. The council have spent in excess of £188 on this library project. There are books, music albums, maps, children’s section and archive materials which can be inspected with...  more »
Google
  • A wonderful library with plenty of space to sit, and a wide range of books to read and learn from. The only thing is, with a lot of the best books being reference books that cannot be checked out, it would have been nice to have longer opening hours, at least during the week. As a student this would also make travelling to the library more cost effective as I could get more done in a single day.
  • Beautiful library. Very modern. My daughter and I really enjoy the kids area, full of children's books and comfy seating. There's a kids' stay and play once a week which we enjoy attending as well.
  • Absolutely amazing architecture! The whole building is practically a monument. But being used as library isn't really working for students (like myself) or full time workers. Staff are unhelpful, there is a lack of seating, and the opening and closing times are ridiculous! Coming here to work/study is impossible. You would be better off going to a more local library. Even though there is a lack of variation in books at local libraries, they are very quiet and have enough seating for everyone there.
  • Great Piece of modern architecture, it's​ like a temple for books. Definitely worth a view also for tourists. From the roof garden there's a great view over Birmingham. In the top of the building you can visit Shakespeare's 'original' library.
  • Lovely library! great selection of books of course but with so much more! Brilliant architecture too!

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Where to stay in Birmingham

To experience the best urban attractions available in Birmingham, book your lodgings in the pedestrianized city center. This area is known for its attractive walkways, which provide easy foot access to most tourist sites. Centrally located hotels offer stunning views of the city's skyline and numerous modern amenities, including luxurious spa centers and award-winning restaurants. Staying close to the center will put you in the thick of the action, near all of the city's famous bars and nightclubs. If all you are looking for is a good night's sleep and a warm meal, consider booking your rooms at a family-run B&B in one of the quieter neighborhoods on the outskirts of town.
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