Storing an ever growing collection



October 10, 2015

The National Art Library‘s collection grows at a rate of around 7000 items per year, meaning that we are constantly looking at ways of maximizing the space available in our stores. We currently store our books in seventeen different locations around the Museum, but with finite space available every inch counts! With this in mind we have a rolling programme of store improvements.

The Toshiba Gallery Store has recently undergone some improvement works and will re-open on 2 November. This means that items stored here will be available again from this date.

Further improvements will soon begin in the Library’s Crypt Store to increase storage capacity by 230 linear meters. The works will take place from the 22 October 2015, making books located in this store unavailable for approximately 3 and a half months. We will complete the works as quickly as possible and if any areas become accessible during the project we will make them available earlier.

At the same time the Library is also improving access to collections by embarking on a range of digitization projects, offering you free online copies of selected collections. Look out for a blog on this subject soon!

As with previous store closures, all inaccessible items will show as ‘unavailable’ on the NAL Catalogue and a list of pressmarks affected is also available here. Library staff will be happy to assist you in looking for alternative titles in your subject area, or will help you locate the item you wish to see in another library. You can search for alternative locations for the books yourself, using online union catalogues such as Copac and WorldCat, or for serial publications you can try SUNCAT. You could also search the Internet Archive to see if a digitised copy is available. If you have any questions about the project, or about an item’s availability, please do not hesitate to contact us online.

About the author



October 10, 2015

I am the manager of the onsite information services in the Word & Image Department, including the National Art Library, the Prints & Drawings Study Room and the Blythe House...

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