ABTAPL - Association of British Theological and Philosophical Libraries  

Theological and Religious Studies Collection Directory

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Name of Library: Birmingham Central Library

Address: Chamberlain Square, Birmingham B3 3HQ

Town: Birmingham

Telephone: 0121-303 4545

Fax: 0121 464 1178

E-mail: social.sciences.library@birmingham.gov.uk;


Website: http://www.birmingham.gov.uk/libraries

Alternative names


Marion Smith

Job Title

Librarian, Social Sciences

Purpose and main user community of the library

Reference library, for members of the public.

Terms of access

Free public access

Opening hours

M-F 09.00-20.00, Sa 09.00-17.00, Su closed

Disabled access

Ramp access to building. Lifts to all floors. Induction loops at enquiry counters. Equipment available for visually impaired library users.


ILL for reference use only.



Periodicals - Back Issues


Current Periodicals



1,115 microfilms (67 titles); 1,700 microfiche (6 titles); 1,500 items of audio-visual materials

(e.g. posters, maps, ephemera); 8 videos.

Volumes added per year



Good all round collection of Theological Studies, covering Biblical Studies, Systematic

Theology, Modern Theological Thought, Church History, Liturgy, Ethics, Patristics, Spiritual

and Devotional Literature, and Theology relating to political, social and economic matters.

Substantial collection of material on World religions covering beliefs, doctrines, worship and

the sacred scriptures. Significant holdings in Christian denominational material, particularly

Quaker. Collection of material on the Christadelphians and an excellent collection of

denominational year books and directories. The Department also collects current

documentary material of the World Council of Churches, British Council of Churches and

Church Synod publications. Good all round collection of Philosophy including all schools and

systems and such topics as Metaphysics, Logic, Ethics, Epistemology and the History of

Eastern and Western Philosophy.

Special Collections

Rosicrucian Collection: Ca. 400 vols.Thomas Hall Library: Parish library of Kings Norton, ca.

700 vols.Thomas Bray Library: Parish library of Sheldon, ca. 370 vols.

Research resource

Rastafarian movement.

Catalogue Type

Computer and Card (pre-1972)

URL of catalogue


Other facilities

Photocopying (monochrome and colour), microfilm/fiche prints, microfilming, photographic

facilities, word processors, WWW.

Full Time Staff 2

Part Time Staff 1


Loan copies of some material on theology and world religions are available from the Central Lending Library but the main collections in the Central Library are for reference only.
Most of the material on theology and world religions is in the Social Sciences section. Books
printed before 1701 are shelved in the Early and Fine Printing Collection, which is housed in Arts, Languages and Literature. Archival material, including the Birmingham Diocesan Record Office, and material relating to Birmingham is housed in the Archives and Heritage section. Social Sciences covers a wide range of subjects; all staff are trained to deal with basic enquiries on all their subjects, but only 3 staff specialise in in-depth enquiries on theology and world religions.

Last updated 5/8/08 | E-mail webmaster
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