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Cambridge Union Library

Cambridge Union Library Background

Cambridge Union Library Constitution

The original constitution of the Cambridge Union Society stipulates that there should be a library of some sort within the building, furthermore the constitution states that the facilities of the society including the library should ‘…promote both the academic and recreational interests of students of Cambridge University.’
Cambridge Union Library

Cambridge Union Library Design

The Keynes Library is situated within the Society’s famous buildings which were designed by Sir Alfred Waterhouse in 1866, with the part of the building now occupied by the library being added in 1886. The Victorian style of high ceilings and tall windows make the main library areas light and airy, with both rooms having wonderful views across to St. John’s College Chapel.

Cambridge Library Collection

The Union library’s diverse collection includes the largest selection of borrowable fiction in Cambridge outside the University Library. The library also has sections of books in
  • English literature
  • drama
  • poetry
  • classics
  • biography
  • politics
  •  popular science
  • economics
  • philosophy
  • Oxford & Cambridge history
  • local history
  • sport
  • travel
  • humour
  • as well as having a comprehensive reference section.
  • The library also holds the famous Fairfax Rhodes rare book collection bequeathed to the Union in 1929.
  • The library has an extensive collection of antiquarian journal titles with particular reference to Cambridge University and its students, including bound volumes of Cambridge University examination papers dating from 1860.
  • There are bound volumes of The Cambridge University Reporter and other university based series such as The Granta,

Cambridge Union Weddings

Recently for the first time a wedding was held in the Cambridge Library. To see the beautiful Union Library Wedding Photographs. There are more than a few firsts in Kitty & Dans Library wedding, the first Humanist wedding  photographed by John Owen, the first Cambridge wedding and what felt like the first dry day in ages. Kitty and Dan where married on 5th May at the Union at 2pm and the Humanist wedding ceremony was conducted by Julia A’Court. For more information on the Photography contact with Andrew Goode click here

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