Family History Library and Collections
The library of The Institute is housed in some six rooms in the building that dates largely from the thirteenth and sixteenth centuries. It has grown around the personal collections of its founder and first Trustee, Cecil Humphery-Smith, and from other donations and purchases, into an extensive working library. Now consisting of nearly thirty thousand items, much of the collection is unique. It has expanded over the years, now running the full length of the first floor, and occupying passages, and the walls of the lecture hall. It has many finding aids and text books outlining which records may be of beneficial use and where they may be found, rather than original records and transcripts. However, some transcripts of records have been deposited in the library over the years.
The collection has been formed to assist the staff of The Institute and Achievements and to supplement and support the work of both professional and amateur genealogists and heraldists and students, along with those involved in the applications of these subjects. The policy of the library is to acquire source material that may be of assistance to them in the study of the history and structure of the family.
Library opening hours are 10:00 – 4:00 pm, Monday-Thursday. IHGS members have free access. The rate for non-members is £12.50 a day or £8.75 per half day. Since space in the library is limited, all members and visitors must make an appointment with the librarian so that it can be ensured that there is enough room for all whom so wish to work without interruption or discomfort. For more information, please contact the Librarian on (01227 768664) or via our Contact page.
A brief summary of the library collection includes the following material: