Spaces to Hire at The London Library

Whether you are interested in hosting an event or looking for a space to film, at The London Library you and your guests will experience the rich cultural heritage of the organisation and a unique location unlike anywhere else in London. Take a 360° tour of our main spaces; the Issue Hall, Reading Room and Study and see for yourself. You can find further images and descriptions of these spaces below.

All income from hiring the venue is directed back into the conservation of the vast collection, the upkeep of the historic building and developing our outreach programmes.



The Reading Room

Standing reception: 200 guests
Seated dinner: 100 guests
Theatre style: 130 guests

Offering stunning views across St James's Square, plus double-height, book-lined walls and elegant ironwork balustrades, the Reading Room is our main space for events and sits at the historic heart of the Library. The Reading Room provides a flexible and atmospheric space whether you are looking to host a sophisticated dinner, a presentation or a reception. As well as the main space, the balustrades can be used for speeches or small performances and offer guests a great view of the events.

Video tour of the Reading Room


The Issue Hall

Standing reception: 100 guests

The Issue Hall is the perfect space for guests to register their attendance at the Reception Desk and also serves as a welcome area for larger standing events in the Reading Room, or a pre-dinner drink reception area. A cloakroom can be set up in front of the Library lockers with the old Librarian’s Desk used as a bar.

Video tour of the Issue Hall


The Study

Standing reception: 30 guests
Seated dinner: 12 guests
Theatre style: 30 guests

Opposite to the Reading Room, the Study is perfect for intimate dining or small drink receptions. Guests can enjoy the faux regency design of the space, complete with an original Robert Adam fireplace. The Study also serves as a field kitchen for larger events hosted in the Library, and gives caterers easy access to the Reading Room and to the lift.


The Art Room

Standing reception: 50 guests 

This recently refurbished space, which houses the Library's extensive art and architecture collection, is a modern and inspiring space for smaller events, and works as a fantastic reception space before dinner in the Reading Room. It can also serve as a private area for VIP drinks during larger events in the Reading Room.

Video tour of the Art Room


The Back Stacks 

The extensive network of back stacks with 17 miles of shelving offer a fascinating insight into the workings of the Library and are the perfect location for filming and photoshoots. The characterful grilled floors, the backdrop of the books and the atmospheric lighting means this unique space works just as well for documentaries as it does for feature films. 

The back stacks house the Library’s collection of History, Science, Literature and Miscellanea, and are a great place to explore on small tours and VIP visits. Specific books that relate to your guests or your organisation interests can be exhibited as part of your event which makes for a truly memorable and unique experience for guests.

Video tour of the famous stacks


The Library's Entrance (Image 1 and 2) on St James' Square is where your guests will first get a glimpse inside the Library. Behind this stunning, yet modest façade hides a wealth of amazing features, including 17 miles of open access bookshelves and over one million books. There is also a separate entrance to the Library for those who need wheelchair or step-free access.

Foyle Lightwell Reading Room (Image 3) was created from a former central lightwell and reaches four storeys high. The Foyle Lightwell Reading Room is the perfect space for a small drink reception after a tour, or to use as a green room for larger events. Allowing glimpses into every wing of the Library and featuring bronze panelling, guests can relax in one of our most contemporary spaces. Standing Reception: 30 guests

The Times Room (Image 4, 5 and 6) is a great space for filming interviews or hosting book displays as part of a tour. The room houses over 200 years' worth of The Times newspaper in rolling stacks which can be used when filming. The space is wheelchair accessible, but not available for event receptions. Standing Reception: 30 guests

The Writers Room (Image 7) is found next to the Reading Room and is a fantastic space for filming or photoshoots, but can also be used as an event space for smaller presentations. Complete with a mezzanine level, it has high ceilings and an airy, modern feel, whilst still keeping some of the Library's traditional charm. Standing Reception/Presentation: 30 guests