Graphical version

Imperial College of Science Technology and Medicine

Libraries of Imperial College


Reference code(s): GB 0098 GM

Held at: Imperial College of Science Technology and Medicine

Title: Libraries of Imperial College

Date(s): Created 1931-1992 (ongoing)

Level of description: Series of Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine records

Extent: 12 boxes

Name of creator(s): Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine


Administrative/Biographical history:

The College Library was known as the Lyon Playfair Library after Lord Playfair of St Andrews (1818-1898), a Chemistry lecturer at the Royal School of Mines and statesman. The Haldane recreational library, was named after Richard Burdon Haldane, MP, (1856-1928) who was involved in the formation of Imperial College. On developing a close working relationship with the Science Museum Library, the national library for the History of Science, the libraries collectively became known as the Central Library, whilst maintaining their individual identities. The Imperial College Library Committee was later know as the Union Library Committee.


Scope and content/abstract:

Records relating to Imperial College libraries, namely the Lyon Playfair Library, Central Libraries and Haldane Library, comprising papers relating to the Lyon Playfair Library, 1950-1977, including Committee minutes and correspondence, 1956-1972; guides and articles, correspondence concerning the Annan collection, 1972-1974; London Natural History Society, 1972 (GMC);
Central Libraries Management Committee press releases, and papers relating to working procedures, 1989-1992, (GMD);
papers relating to the Haldane Library, 1931-1986, including College Library Committee minutes, 1931-1976; accounts, 1940-1966; booklists and lists of collections, 1974-1986; correspondence, 1956-1962; Haldane Library Committee minutes, 1957-1964 (GMH);


Language/scripts of material: English

System of arrangement:

The records are arranged in sections as outlined in the scope and content.

Conditions governing access:

Researchers wishing to consult the Archives should first contact the College Archivist, Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, Exhibition Road, London SW7 2AZ, for an appointment.

Conditions governing reproduction:

A photocopying service is available at the discretion of the Archivist. Photocopies are supplied for research use only. Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Archivist.

Physical characteristics:

Finding aids:

A catalogue is available at the College Archives.


Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information:


Archival history:

Created and accumulated by Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine during the course of business.

Immediate source of acquisition:


Existence and location of originals:

Existence and location of copies:

Related material:

Publication note:



Archivist's note: Compiled by Julie Tancell as part of the RSLP AIM25 project.

Rules or conventions: General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal Place and Corporate Names 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions: October 2000

Academic libraries | Libraries

Personal names

Corporate names
Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine
Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine | Libraries