Women’s Library reopens in London

LSE has taken responsibility for the collection from the London Metropolitan University
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Simon Stephens
A collection documenting women’s lives over the past 150 years has reopened at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).

The LSE took ownership of the Women’s Library last year following the London Metropolitan University’s decision to seek a new home for the collection as part of a plan to cut costs.

The London Met had housed the library in a building that opened more than 10 years ago and received £4.2m from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Craig Calhoun, the director of the LSE, said that the reading room that the LSE has opened was the first of three facilities being developed this year for the Women’s Library. Next will be an exhibition space and a teaching and activity room.

“The collection is one of the best international collections for the support of research on women's lives and gender issues, and these facilities will be a great asset to future generations of LSE students and researchers from all over the world,” Calhoun said.

The Women’s Library was founded in 1926 as the Library of the London Society for Women’s Service, a non-militant organisation led by leading suffragist Millicent Fawcett.

Its collections include more than 60,000 books and pamphlets and 3,000 periodical titles. The archive and museum collections feature over 500 archives and 5,000 museum objects, including photographs, posters, badges, banners, textiles and ceramics.

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