About our rare books and special collections

The rare books and special collections include over 50,000 volumes. 

We have items from the 13th century through to the 20th century. Many of these rare books and manuscripts were donated when Brighton Library first opened in 1873.

How to view our rare books and special collections

We keep the collections of rare books and special collections at Jubilee Library and Hove Library. Both libraries have dedicated reading rooms. 

To view an item from the rare books and special collections, check the online catalogue. In the collections field, choose Rare Books Collections, select the item you'd like to see and note down the call number. 

You'll need to send an email with the call number to libraries@brighton-hove.gov.uk. We will contact you to make an appointment for you to view it.

This may take up to 14 days to arrange.