Outstanding collection, reading rooms, exhibitions and events are all very disabled accessible
This visit included a person who uses: Walking Aid
The national library and one of the largest libraries in the world. Anyone with a genuine need to look at the collection can apply for a free readers' pass and use their reading rooms. It also houses a business centre, permanent exhibition of historic books and manuscripts, as well as hosting temporary exhibitions and holding regular events. On site there is a café and book shop. The library has excellent disabled access which includes ramps, lifts, accessible toilets and providing study aids.
Transport & Parking
The British Library is on Euston Road next door next door to St Pancras Station and close to King's Cross and Euston Stations. There are also a number of bus routes that stop outside the library. I travelled on public transport.
In front of main library building is a piazza (open square). There are both a small flight of stairs and step free entrances to the piazza. If it's been raining, as I walk with a crutch, I tend to find the surface of the piazza very slippery as it has smooth tiled and marble flooring. I find it easier to enter either from Euston Road from the right hand side as there is a covered walkway to the main entrance or from Midland Road, opposite St Pancras Station as with both routes I don't have to manage the slippery tiles. Then there is a ramp or small flight of stairs to enter the building. Once inside the entrance you are immediately faced with a flight of stairs, however on the right towards the rear there is a lift that connects with the lower group and upper ground floor. From there are other floors there are lifts that stop at every floor except the entrance hall level. The entrance lift was easy to find but it had to be pointed out to me the first time I need to use it. If you are unsure there is an information desk opposite the entrance. The Conference Centre, is a separate building, and from the piazza there is a steps free entrance an lift to the upper floor. The doors are power assisted for easy opening.
There are disabled accessible doors on all floors, with power assisted doors for easy opening. Some of them are located inside the main toilet blocks and others are separately located. They are clearly sign posted. Toilets have emergency alarms and grab rails. On two separate occasions when I visited the emergency cord was not reaching the floor, I reported it to staff, and on my most recent visit the cord touched the floor. The toilets are usually very clean but on my last occasion one of the disabled toilets had a very wet floor. I reported this to a member of staff and they immediately got on the phone to their cleaning department.
Staff are always exceptionally helpful. They have offered to carry my books to my desk in the reading room. When I have asked them a question they have always been helpful and proactive.
Anything else you wish to tell us?
I regularly visit the British Library and I find their disabled access facilities and their staff extremely helpful and this has enabled me to continue my research and enjoy their facilities with ease.
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