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“Newly restored and worth a visit”

Manchester Central Library
Ranked #8 of 181 things to do in Manchester
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children, Food available for purchase, Wheelchair access, Bathroom facilities
Bury, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
346 reviews
146 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 128 helpful votes
“Newly restored and worth a visit”
Reviewed 2 July 2014

After a multi million pound refit the library gas undergone a massive transformation to bring it into the current era. The traditional reading/reference library and reading areas have been joined by lots of electronic displays to attract a wide range of visitors.

Visited June 2014
1 Thank David H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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799 reviews from our community

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York, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
365 reviews
102 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 112 helpful votes
“drop in for the exhibits and for a great building”
Reviewed 28 June 2014

Magnificent building with an imposing reading room upstairs. Downstairs is a great archive with films available as well as books ad local info. Very interesting display of history of manchester with a nice balance between artefacts and computer display stuff. Well worth a visit.

Visited June 2014
2 Thank Jon b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
1,058 reviews
675 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 443 helpful votes
“Modernized for its next 100 years”
Reviewed 8 June 2014 via mobile

I remember my student days in the library and this was the place to go study and get access to millions of books. It has just had a modern revamp but keeping its important architectural features. Brilliant revamp and this keeps libraries modern.

Visited March 2014
1 Thank CorneliusfudgeGM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stockport, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
50 reviews
34 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
“A library fit for the 21st century”
Reviewed 7 June 2014

After several years of refurbishment, the improved Central
Library recently re-opened for all to enjoy, irrespective of whether
you are interested in books or not, there is sure to be something
of interest for all the family. If the last time you visited was before
the refurbishment was begun, you will be amazed at the
transformation that has taken place since.

The entrance hall is much the same, but cleaner and brighter,
having undergone a deep clean, the lifts having been moved
and modernised, are now to the right-hand side of the library,
and built from glass, which features in much of the library
including on the stairways, giving a generally airy open feel
to things.
The most noticeable change is on the ground floor which is
now open plan with a central feature having an illuminated
moving notice board, which if you look up, you can see into
the domed reading room, although this has not radically
changed, other having been cleaned and now has many
computers, which are free to use, wi-fi is also available.

Getting back to the ground floor, activities include, film
mediatheque, with booths for private viewing of film / history
archives and provided with headsets. Visually impaired visitors
are also catered for, audio books are available in addition to
e-books, there is even a section for family history research
amongst other interactive historical features. The cafe is now
located on the same floor, providing drinks and light foods,
a minor irritation is the lack of trays, which are needed to
transport your food whilst looking for a suitable place to eat
which is tricky when the library is busy, and more tables are
needed, the food was rather expensive too, particularly if
you are taking the the family.

The basement, which was once home to the lovely Library
Theatre, and is a shame that this intimate little theatre was
moved, this space is now being used for book storage, and
is one of the down sides to new library. Quite a surprise was
the huge general library, which is located in the basement,
and was excavated under the library walk and beneath the
Town Hall extension, incorporating an area for parents to
read to young children and has comfortable soft seating.

With the exception of the ground floor and basement,
elsewhere in the library there have been fewer changes,
apart from a general cleaning up with computers being
provided on all floors, and an excellent place to study,
but with a little more besides. If you haven't visited the
new library yet, it's worth a look, and bring the children,
they will be sure to find something of interest in what must
now be one of the finest libraries in in Britain, and marries
successfully, the old with the new.

Visited April 2014
Thank Davidfarrow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
18 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Absolutely Beautiful”
Reviewed 1 June 2014

This is an absolutely beautiful building, inside and out. I'd recommend visiting it if you're in the area even if you don't require to use it as a library. It's a stunning building to spend some time reading or just people watching. The cafe though I found was quite pricey.

Visited May 2014
Thank Amanda T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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