The Library's collections date from the 15th century to the present day and include books and manuscripts, prints and drawings, maps, newspapers and ephemera.
The Library’s foundation collection includes science, mathematics and engineering, natural history, travel and exploration, art and architecture, music, literature, history and religion. The collection of bound volumes of local newspapers, some dating from the 18th century, is unique. There are many early illustrated books, maps, prints and drawings and a comprehensive holding of materials relating to the West Country dating from the 16th century. The Library also holds a large collection of pamphlets and tracts as well as long runs of 19th century periodicals.
West Country collection
We continue to collect publications relating to the history and topography of the West Country, including pamphlets and local journals and newsletters as well as the reports and transactions of societies and institutions. The Library also has an extensive collection of local newspapers on microfilm.