Here to help
Newsletter Signup

The Library


Introduction to the Local Studies Library

  • The Local Studies library contains 18,000 items covering a broad range of subjects relevant to the study of Northumberland
  • It is the largest collection of secondary source material relating to Northumberland
  • It also includes publications relating to the North East at large including the Scottish Borders
  • It contains works by or about people who were born in Northumberland


For more information on the Local Studies Library download our user guide by clicking here. 

What is in the Library

  • Books
  • Periodicals, journals and newspapers
  • Trade Directories
  • Parish registers - published transcripts
  • Recordings - records, compact discs, DVD's, videos
  • Mining collection - (not yet on the catalogue Feb. 2010)
  • Printed Ephemera - booklets, pamphlets, leaflets
  • Maps - published editions
  • New stock being added all the time (follow this link for the latest titles)

The allocation of Local Studies Stock across the County Library system

  • The main collections is housed at Woodhorn Museum
  • Each of the main libraries in the county has a core collection of standard texts and material relevant to the immediate local area for reference and loan
  • Each of the branch libraries has a small core collection and material of local significance for reference and loan
  • Small branches have a selection for loan


  • The County Local Reference Library and Local Reserve Stock Collections are housed at Woodhorn Museum and Archive
  • The redevelopment of Woodhorn was an opportunity to bring together the resources of Archives, Local Studies Library and the Woodhorn Mining Museum Library collection
  • Woodhorn provides ideal housing for the preservation of the stock
  • There are in excess of 12,000 books in the Local Studies Reference Library (prefixed 'LR' in the catalogue) - these cannot be loaned, but can be viewed at Woodhorn in the Study Centre
  • In addition there are 18,000 volumes in the Local Studies Reserve Library (prefixed 'LSR' in the catalogue) These volumes are used to supplement the collections at branches throughout Northumberland and library staff are encouraged to contact the Local Studies Librarian to discuss customers needs or to refer customers for advice

Access to the Library at Woodhorn:

  • Through the catalogue - items are listed in the County Library Catalogue. Customers can search on the County Library website. Copies of books at Woodhorn are located to 'WDH' on the catalogue.
  • Through the Study Centre at Woodhorn - opening hours 10-4pm Wednesday to Sunday
  • Through branch libraries - Customers may request copies through their local Library. Staff will contact the Local Studies Librarian at Woodhorn, Wednesday to Fridy and arrange for the book to be sent to the appropriate library.
  • Contact details are also available via the County Library Section on the County Council website

How the collection is managed

  • Stock policy and criteria - refer to Policy document
  • Stock disposal policy - refer to Policy document
  • Acquisition - refer to Policy document
  • Conservation - through rebinding and repair

Contact details

Library Catalogue (follow this link to take you to the search facility)

Tel: 01670 624455

Archives Service (follow this link to the Collections home pages)

Northumberland Communities Website (follow this link)