Libraries and archives

Central Library

Central Library is a beautifully re-modelled building with free wifi and 130 computers. It's the home of our business centre, a dedicated family space and the Liverpool Record Office and Archives. It also houses the historic grade II listed Picton Reading Room and Hornby Library along with 15,000 rare books. Find out more about all the services we offer.

Central Library

Central Library

Closed Today

Find us

William Brown Street, Liverpool L3 8EW

Contact us

We are closed bank holidays

Main library opening hours

Opening hours


Service opening hours

Explore our archives, records and rare books

Our collections date from 13th century onwards. Explore original documents, photographs, maps and newspapers which record the lives of Liverpudlians across the centuries.

Free reference sites

Access a rich variety of reference sites online via our digital reading platform

More to do at Central Library

Visit the Business and IP Centre, or hire a meeting room.

Discover library - for children and families

A fully accessible family area with a child friendly environment hosting a wealth of books and free computers to use for young people up to 14. Find out more about children's library resources.

Additional services and facilities

Study spaces

  • Four floors of seating
  • 130 library computers - some available to pre-book and some walk up computers for members
  • A quiet study space in the Picton Reading Room, first floor


  • Free wifi
  • Multi-functional devices that print, scan and copy
  • Toilets and baby change facilities


  • Automatic entrance doors
  • Accessible lift
  • Accessible toilets
  • Changing Places toilet

Events at Central Library

Events will be promoted here in the run-up to the event. 

You can also view our main library events page, where you will find out about our regular events and what's happening in our community libraries.

  • Tag it, keep it

    Central Library

    Register your possessions for free. Merseyside Police will tag items for free and add them to the Secure Asset Register, the Police and insurance approved property database designed to help you get your possessions back if they are lost or stolen.

    Monday 26th February 2024 11am - 1pm. Free - just drop in

    • Monday
    • 26/02/2024
    • 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM
    • William Brown Street, Liverpool L3 8EW
  • Cuppa with a Copper

    Central Library

    Is there something you want the city's local policing team to tackle or give you advice about? Come along and chat to a member of Merseyside Police.

    Monday 26th February 11am-1pm. Free - just drop in.

    • Monday
    • 26/02/2024
    • 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM
    • William Brown Street, Liverpool L3 8EW
  • Try shared reading

    Central Library

    Shared reading groups bring people together to talk, laugh and share.

    Drop in, grab a cuppa and enjoy listening to a story or poem. No pressure to read or talk! Email for more information.

    Every Monday from 11am-12.30pm.

  • Half term - Creative writing workshop for kids

    Central Library

    Join ArtsGroupie CIC and unleash your creativity with our brilliantly fun creative writing workshops. Workshops are free and suitable for ages 7 to 14. Safe and supervised.

    Sign up by emailing

    • Monday
    • 12/02/2024
    • 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM
    • William Brown Street, Liverpool L3 8EW
  • Half term - Steam Engineers

    Central Library

    Join us on an eco adventure for coding and making with an eco twist. Some chiuldren may need help from a parent.

    Drop in anytime between the advertised hours:

    Tuesday 13th and Saturday 17th February,  1pm - 3pm

    For more information, visit

  • Lost at Sea! Raffles and the wildlife of Southeast Asia

    Central Library

    Why was Raffles collecting animals and plants in Southeast Asia, and how did some birds collected for Raffles end up in Liverpool? Find out in our free exhibition of animals, books and drawings and models in partnership with Liverpool World Museum. Situated in the Hornby Library in Liverpool Central Library.

    1st February to 30th April 2024 - and open free of charge during normal opening hours.

  • Social prescribing drop-in

    Central Library

    Wednesdays 2.30pm to 4pm. Central Liverpool Primary Care Network and the Citizen’s Advice Bureau offer social prescribing and welfare advice.

    • 14th February - Love Your Heart

    Central Library Main Atrium. Just drop - no appointment needed.

  • Learn My Way basic digital skills course

    Central Library

    Each Wednesday 2.30pm-4.30pm in the first floor Enquire area.

    Free - just drop in, no appointment needed.

  • Sole Survivor CIC - PTSD support group

    Central Library

    This group supports PTSD survivors and meets weekly to focus on sharing coping strategies, experiences and pathways to wellness. You do not need to have a formal diagnosis. To join and find out more visit the Sole Survivor website call 07903 544585 or email

    Each Tuesday 6.30-7.30pm in the fourth floor meeting rooms.

  • Liverpool in Work employment advice helpdesk

    Central Library

    Each Thursday 10am-2.30pm in the Atrium Café.

    Drop in - no appointment needed.

  • Rethink Mental Illness Peer Support Group

    Central Library

    Each Thursday from 4pm-6pm and Friday from 10.30am-12pm in the first floor Enquire area.

    Drop in - no appointment needed.

  • Councillor's Surgery

    Central Library

    A chance to chat with your councillor if you have a problem or need advice. First Saturday of the month 12pm — 1pm.

    Drop in.


  • National Careers Service drop in CV and employability skills

    Central Library

    One-to-one help with your CV and cover letters, interview skills, finding courses and training, as well as career advice and skills assessments. Appointments held in the ground floor games room each Thursday between 9am-5pm.

    Free. Call 0800 100 900 to book an appointment with an adviser.

  • Shared Reading PLUS sessions

    Central Library

    Aimed at people living with dementia, their carers, family members and friends. Just drop in, grab a cuppa and enjoy listening to a poem or story - no pressure to talk or read.  

    Wednesdays at 1pm. Drop in. For more information contact

  • Liverpool Dementia Information Day

    Central Library

    A free drop-in event for:

    • people living with dementia and their carers
    • organisations working with and for people with dementia
    • anyone interested in finding out more about the condition

    Exhibition area, talks, activities, guidance and support and lots more. For full details contact

    • Thursday
    • 14/03/2024
    • 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    • William Brown Street, Liverpool L3 8EW