Thursday, January 27, 2011

Delays to British Library Boston Spa services

The British Library stores some of its collections in storage buildings in Boston Spa, West Yorkshire.

In common with many buildings built at the same time, asbestos was used in the construction of the Boston Spa site, and the Library has a continuous programme of asbestos detection and removal. Recently, very small traces of asbestos were found in some areas. All air sampling tests have found there to be no health risk. However, the Library is taking sensible and responsible precautions to ensure the health and safety Readers, users and staff in full compliance with the very strict health and safety regulations applying to the management of asbestos.

This means that some areas of the Boston Spa site may be closed temporarily, and that some of our usual services may be unavailable.

The major asbestos removal works currently planned are expected to last for much of 2011. Up to 30% of the document supply collection may be affected, leading to items being unavailable in the St Pancras and Boston Spa Reading Rooms.

A list of affected material is currently being prepared and will be made available online soon. In the meantime, we would recommend that, wherever possible, you order material in advance to confirm its availability before travelling.

  • The University of York Library provides a free minibus service to the British Library Reading Room at Boston Spa. More details about this and the British Library can be found at:

  • Don't forget as an alternative to visiting the British Library you can request material not held by either Hull or York University Libraries via our Inter Library Loans services. Please see the information on this page: