The British Library is the national library of the United Kingdom and one of the world’s greatest research libraries. It provides world class information services to the academic, business, research and scientific communities and offers unparalleled access to the world’s largest and most comprehensive research collection. The Library’s collection has developed over 250 years and exceeds 150 million items representing every age of written civilisation. It includes: books, journals, manuscripts, maps, stamps, music, patents, photographs, newspapers and sound recordings in all written and spoken languages.
We receive a copy of every publication produced in the UK and Ireland and 3 million new items are added every year. We have manuscripts, maps, newspapers, magazines, prints and drawings, music scores, patents, Sound archive and 8 million stamps. If you were to see 5 items each day, it would take you over 80,000 years to see the whole of the collection.