The library and archive has been an integral part of the life of Worcester Cathedral since Anglo-Saxon times. It exists to facilitate research by scholars. It is a resource for cathedral staff carrying out repair work on the building, and for relevant local and family history enquiries by members of the public, and through tours for interested groups, the library enables ordinary people to see historic books and ancient documents.
The collection comprises 298 medieval manuscripts, which range mainly from the tenth to the fifteenth centuries. There are also†5500 post medieval books collected by the post medieval Dean and Chapter and the Bishops of Worcester, and 19,000 archive documents which belong to the Dean and Chapter and stretch from the middle ages to the present day. There is also a music collection, which contains works by many famous composers including Sir Edward Elgar and Thomas Tomkins, and also archives. The cathedral library looks after the parish libraries of St. Nicholas (Worcester), Bromsgrove, Feckenham, and Great Malvern churches.†
To see two sort video clips of Worcester' Medieval Library ....click†here††
To see a display of images from the Cathedral Library collection....click here†
To find out about the history of the library and archive......read more
To find out about the Cathedral's collections......read more
Photography and microfilms for researchers.....read more
To discover more about the cathedral's conservation projects......read more
Tours of the cathedral library and archive
Tours of the Library for groups or individuals are always welcome but must be made by appointment. For further information fill in the†form below or ring 01905†732922.
Library tours cost £5 per adult and £2.50 per child.
Information for Researchers
There are other local research resources available. Details can be found at the University of Worcester Library†Research collections page,
For medical history the George Marshall Medical Museum contains just under one thousand rare medical books and archives dating, mainly from the 19th and†20th centuries, as well as the 17th and 18th Centuries which compliment the cathedral's medieval and early modern medical books.††
An appointment can be booked to study in the cathedral library from Monday to Friday 10am to 1pm then from 1.45pm to 4.45pm.†††††††††††
All researchers†will need to make an appointment and bring†a letter of introduction. A catalogue of the medieval manuscripts has been published:† R. M. Thomson, A Descriptive Catalogue of the Medieval Manuscripts in Worcester Cathedral Library, †D. S. Brewer 2001, with a contribution on the bindings by Michael Gullick.