Update on the Well-Being of the Wellcome Library

Posted in resources by Editor on May 26, 2010

I’m glad to note that I received the following message of assurance from Simon Chaplin, the Head of the Wellcome Library, in regard to my earlier question about the fate of the Library. I observed that it’s difficult for me to imagine the Library without the Centre — it seems that, in fact, the Library is starting to make plans for assuming some of the responsibilities previously handled by the Centre, such as support of visiting scholars. Many thanks, Simon, for the clarification, and my apologies for perpetuating any unreliable information. -C.H.

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I’m happy to say that the decision about the Centre hasn’t raised any questions about the library — our position is very secure. We’re about to embark on a big project to put more of our collections online – the Trust has earmarked four million pounds for this over the next two years, with up to another sixteen million pounds available once the project is up and running – and the numbers of physical users are also going up by 25% a year, so there is no danger that the move to digital will reduce our physical presence. I’ve been talking with colleagues in the Centre and the Trust about how we can support visiting researchers using the library if the Centre moves out of its present location, so we should be able to maintain this service regardless of the changes. I’d be grateful if you could offer Enfilade readers some reassurance on this – there have been several other reports about the Wellcome Library’s ‘closure’, and I’m keen that the rumour doesn’t put down roots. With best wishes – and hoping to see you in the library soon!

Dr Simon Chaplin
Head of the Wellcome Library
Wellcome Library
183 Euston Road, London NW1 2BE

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