The Record Office has reopened
Please see ‘Reopening and Booking’ on our home page for new booking procedures and opening hours. Under latest government guidance it is compulsory to wear face coverings in libraries and public reading rooms unless you have an exemption. Visits will need to be pre-booked and we have made some additional changes in the search rooms, visitor facilities and the reception area to ensure we remain Covid-secure. Guidance from the National Archives recommends that archival materials are quarantined after use for up to 72 hours. This means the availability of our records may vary and we apologise for any inconvenience this may cause. We will continue to be able to help by telephone or email and we encourage you to use these methods where possible. We look forward to welcoming you back soon.
The Local Studies Library provides reference resources for every researcher of Leicestershire, Leicester and Rutland. If you are interested in local people, places, organisations or events then it is well worth searching in the library. Generally the library has strong local content but there are some exceptions such as general publications to help researchers.
It is important to note that all the local studies material held is not available for loan and is for reference only. Researchers, however, may find there is a loan copy in Leicestershire Libraries by searching the online library catalogue. In 2016/17 over 3400 items were added to the Local Studies Library.
How can I find information:
You will need to search a mixture of the library and archive online catalogues as well as card and file indexes.
All books and pamphlets received after 2010 are on the online catalogue. In addition all books and pamphlets relating to transport (canals, railways, roads), hosiery, boot & shoe and other manufacturing industries, major towns (except Leicester), larger villages and local authors (surnames A-G) are now on the catalogue. The remainder of the collection is catalogued in our library card catalogue in the searchroom.
Search the online library catalogue here.
Card Indexes in the Searchroom
The library card catalogue for books and pamphlets received before 2010.
The library card index to local newspaper and periodical articles, mainly covering the period 1960s-2012.
Leicester Journal and Leicester Chronicle newspapers card index, c.1799-1833.
Card index to sound and video recordings and printed music.
Other Finding Aids
Some local studies material has particular finding aids, for example our Ordnance Survey map holdings which are indexed in files in the searchroom. Staff are always on hand to provide advice on the best way to find what you want.