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Islington celebrates 50 years of Finsbury Library

Finsbury Library 1967

Finsbury Library 1967

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From Monday 27 February, visitors to Finsbury Library in St John Street will be able to visit the fantastic ‘Finsbury Library at 50’ exhibition. This captivating collection charts the design and development of Finsbury Library and the Finsbury Estate and explains how the library and the Clerkenwell area have changed since 1967.
There will also be a special collection of the best books, music and films of 1967 available for loan, including the Beatles’ Magical Mystery Tour, Disney’s classic Jungle Book and Agatha Christie’s much-loved (and her personal favourite) Endless Night. 
A host of famous faces have been spotted in Finsbury Library over the last 50 years – from broadcaster Janet Street-Porter, who reopened the library after its 2003 refurbishment, to cult author Douglas Adams, who used to regularly borrow BBC sound effect LPs. 
On Tuesday 7 March, local historian Jiff Bayliss will talk about the planning and construction of the Finsbury Library, the history of the famous library it replaced, and the building of the Finsbury Estate. 
Those keen to learn more can join Jiff on a guided walk on Saturday 11 March, 11am – 12pm, to discover many of the landmarks of the area including Northampton Square, Finsbury Health Centre, Sadler’s Wells Theatre, and the Finsbury Estate. To register for either the talk or walk, please search ‘Finsbury Library’ on
Finsbury Library is home to the Local History Centre, which holds over 125,000 items – some dating as far back as the 15th Century – relating to Islington’s heritage, and also the Islington Museum, its themed galleries showcasing the borough’s past. 
Islington Council’s Executive Member for Economic Development, Cllr Asima Shaikh, said: “This new exhibition is as vibrant and varied as the history it celebrates. Be it local architecture, nostalgic memorabilia, or some classic 60’s albums, there’s something here to capture anyone’s imagination.”
The exhibition opening coincides with the start of this year’s Islington Reads Week ( which is full of events and activities to celebrate and encourage reading – including free book vouchers for children and free books donated to residents who are keen to set up their own reading groups.
For more information about what’s on at Finsbury Library, please visit, follow us on Twitter @islingtonlibs, or pop into your local library. 
The ‘Finsbury Library at 50’ exhibition is open from 27 February to 31 March 2017.

For more information contact:

Eugene Grant
Senior Media Officer
0207 527 2530

The new look Finsbury library.jpg

The new look Finsbury library

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