Central Library

See opening hours, contact details and access information for Central Library.

Visit us

Do not visit us if you have any coronavirus symptoms.


Central Library
Municipal Buildings
Calverley Street
Find us on Google Maps external link

Opening hours

one stop opening times
Monday9am to 8pm
Tuesday9am to 8pm
Wednesday9am to 8pm
Thursday9am to 8pm
Friday9am to 5pm
10am to 4pm

Available services

You can come in and browse to choose your books and also:

Return a book

You can drop off books that you have finished with. There are no fines if you are returning books late.

Collect or renew a book

You can renew books that you already have and pick up books that you have reserved. You can reserve a book:

Use our computers

Cleaning materials are available to clean the keyboard and mouse between uses.  

You can use our computers when you visit, or you can contact us to book session before your visit. You can book up to 2 hours per day.  

Our printers require coins to pay. If possible, please bring the correct change.  

Visit the Tiled Hall Cafe

Specialist services

Music library

The Music library will be closed to the public from 21 August until early 2024 as we carry out a refurbishment work.

General music stock will be inaccessible until works are completed. You can still access all online music resources like Medici and Naxos, and you're welcome to stock up on items now.

Performance sets will continue to be available as normal and we will let you know where to collect and drop off your orders when you book your appointment.

The Business and IP Centre and the Local and Family History library are open along with the following specialist departments:

Reference and research library

Reference and research resources and services are located on the second floor of the Central library. 

There are over 250,000 books, journals and newspapers. Particular strengths include history, literature and historical biography, law and rights. 

Resources include: 

  • online resources
  • reference books
  • newspapers and journals
  • Census
  • law and citizens' rights
  • legislation
  • special collections
  • statistics
Staff can carry out research on your behalf, though charges may apply.  


You can contact the Information and research library by:   

Email: informationandresearch@leeds.gov.uk
Phone: 0113 378 6982

The Arts Floor (art and music)

The Arts Floor is on the 1st floor of Central library and includes the Music and Performing Arts library, the Art library, Studio12 and the exhibition space.

The library holds a specialist book stock of over 10,000 items and has a wide range of resources to support study for individuals and groups in music, art and performance.  

Music and Performing Arts library

We stock a large range of sheet music covering most genres and instruments as well as tuition guides to help you learn to play. 

Performance sets are available for loan to music and drama groups. These include a large collection of orchestral and vocal sets, wind band sets and part songs. Single copies of vocal scores and sets of chamber music can be borrowed by individuals.

We also have over 12,000 play sets for students of drama, theatre groups and drama enthusiasts to browse and borrow from our diverse collection. 

You can try listening to something new and different by borrowing from our wide collections of CDs. We also have a unique collection of music from local artists available. To add your own CD to the collection, pick up a donation form from the library.

Registering your group is simple and free. Contact the library for details of how to join and the latest fees for monthly music and drama set loans.

Art Library

Discover a world of creativity in our unique Art library, the largest public art library in the north of England. Explore the art world with our extensive resources, or create your own masterpieces in our arts and crafts studio.  

The Art library is a member of Leeds Art libraries in Co-operation (LALIC). 

Drawing Room

The Drawing Room is a collaborative city centre studio space based in the Art library at Leeds Central library for artists, tutors and groups to hire.  

We have a monthly programme of workshops, activities and special events which changes regularly. These include drawing, painting, printing, sewing and textiles, art talks and more. We invite proposals from artists who would like to develop their ideas, collaborate and contribute to our programme. 

The space is also available to use for art and creative practice to individuals outside of the workshops. You can buy quality art materials in the Art library or bring your own materials. Times and availability varies daily.

For more information about our monthly programme and workshops, to register a proposal or for hiring the space, contact us with your details.


Our collections feature all aspects of art, including architecture, crafts, drawing, painting, fashion and photography. We cover a wide range of artists, from the popular to the obscure, the classic to the contemporary. Our resources include: 

  • 25,000 books available for loan and a large collection of reference books
  • Special Collections include a range of rare art items. These include the Sanderson Collection, a set of fashion-related illustrations, journals and memorabilia dating from 1770 to the 1950s, the Taphouse Collection, consisting of eighteenth century music scores, as well as a beautiful collection of Victorian Songsheets and some of the last remaining copies of the Leeds Pottery Drawing and Pattern Books
  • exhibition catalogues and pamphlets from local and national institutions, including Leeds Art Gallery and the Arts Council
  • magazines and journals including Art Review and Vogue. We keep back issues of many other journals, some dating back to the 1800s

Contact us

Art library email: artlibrary@leeds.gov.uk 

Music and performing arts library email: musiclibrary@leeds.gov.uk 


Facilities at the Central Library include:

  • baby change units
  • disabled access toilet
  • public toilets
  • free WiFi
  • free computer access with MS Office and internet
  • printing and photocopying

Access information

Bus routes

For information about local bus routes, please visit WY Metro external link.


There is no public car park. There are limited on street parking spaces available for Blue Badge holders only.


Entry to the library is available from Victoria Gardens, there is a lift up to the ground floor.


Lift access is available to the ground floor.

Assistive technology

A range of assistive technology hardware and software is available for use on the public computers, including:

  • screen magnifiers
  • large keyboards, mouse and trackballs
  • Global Writer
  • Boardmaker

Disabled toilets

Accessible toilets are located in the basement area of the Art Gallery and there is a Changing Places facility in the Gallery Shop.

Support dogs

All support dogs are welcome.

Contact us


0113 378 5005


Social media

Twitter: @LeedsLibraries
Facebook: Leeds Libraries

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