The Wiener library is located in Russell square in the centre of London. This is the library’s new premises and it has been in this location since the summer of 2011. Before that time the library had spent 50 years in a building on Devonshire Street W1.
Funding for the library comes from an endowment and from corporate, charitable and private donations. It also received Heritage lottery funding for to fund part of the refurbishment that was carried out on its new building.
The new building has climate controlled rooms and also has a lift. Making it easy to move objects from one floor to the next in this multi storied building. The library also has a modern reading room which has windows that overlook the Square. In addition, the building also has a public space for events and exhibitions. The whole building has been carefully transformed into an excellent space and environment for a library. This is at great credit to both the staff at the library and the architects that worked on this project, especially given that they had to work within the restrictions that listed building status entails. One nice feature is a sliding interior wall on the ground floor that enables the front and rear ground floor to be transformed into one large open space events, which is complete with a pull down blind/projector screen on the buildings ground floor rear window.
The library holds and collects material on the holocaust and on genocide. The library’s current collections consists of a wide variety types of information in a varied range of formats, which includes books, pamphlets, photographs, microfilms, periodicals, and a selection of artefacts. The library also has an archive and is currently finishing off microfilming selections of newspaper clippings, which is performed by an outside source. This archive was recently closed to new material. (Microfilming chosen as the desired form of preservation to negate the possibility of copyright infringement that digitisation may
The library space at its new premises is almost full but the library has also signed up to a joint scheme for off-site storage.
The library uses an Adlib library management system and contains the following types of information:
- Unpublished memoirs
The library’s website (CMS unknown) is currently created and maintained by a Brighton based company: Surface Impression.
Aspects of note
- A unique classification system
- Unique history and an important library in the subject area of the holocaust and genocide.
- A well executed and subtle architecture project that is a good example of how to transform a listed residential type building into a modern library environment.