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Learning and Information

What type of information can I get from my library?

Whether you want to locate a favourite poem, find details of a local society, or find an answer for your homework - libraries can help you.

Library members can access a range of online reference books, these can be accessed through the Digital Reference Library page.

Some libraries:

  • Have copies of Which? magazine for consumer information. 
  • Have local newspapers to view. 
  • Provide access to scanning, printing and photocopying - subject to copyright. 
  • Hold copies of the electoral roll for that town or settlement which you can consult in person. Please note you may not make copies of the electoral roll.

All libraries:

  • Allow access to, where you can research family history for free. 
  • Have computers where you can access the Digital Reference Library.

  • Hold local information folders with posters and leaflets about local events or tourism attractions.

Beverley Reference Library houses an extensive collection of information resources in book and electronic format. Items such as Ordnance Survey maps, local studies books, Haynes repair manuals, and music scores can also be borrowed.

National newspapers, specialist magazines, along with lists of local societies, speakers, and venues, can be consulted during library opening hours. The Reference Library is situated in Beverley Library in the Treasure House.

For more information on Beverley Library, please use our library finder.

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Can the library help me with my homework/study?

Yes, with your library card number and PIN you can check the library catalogue, reserve titles for your study topics and have them delivered to your nearest library. For more information on how to obtain your PIN follow the link to joining the library.

Or with your library card number sign into the Digital Reference Library.You will find accurate, up to date and reliable information from some of the worlds most trusted sources, such as:

Encyclopaedia Britannica
(Library, Student and Junior editions). This covers topics for all age groups.

Oxford Reference Online
A huge resource with over 200 world renowned titles on a wide range of subjects.

Oxford English Dictionary
An up to date dictionary with various facilities allowing you to fully explore the English language, from the present day and throughout history.

UK Newsstand
Search UK local and national newspaper articles, plus The Economist, The New Statesman, The Spectator.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography
50,000 biographies of those who shaped the British Isles and beyond.

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Can I access research papers and academic articles at my local library?

Yes - Access to Research is a two year pilot study which allows you to search for a wide range of research and academic articles published in the UK.

Subjects range from the sciences, mathematics, art, business, engineering, history, languages, politics and philosophy.

There are currently 8,400 journals available (January 2014) and more are expected to become available as more publishers join the scheme. Current publishers include Cambridge University Press, Oxford University Press, Bloomsbury Publishing, Elsevier, Dove Press, Science Reviews 2000 Ltd and many more.

From East Riding Library computers you will be able to search for articles, read them online and print one copy only for your personal use.  (It is not permitted to download articles). 

If you are searching from home you can still view an abstract but you will have to visit your local East Riding of Yorkshire Library to access the full article and print the information.  You will also be able to see articles which are not included in the scheme.

Searching academic articles can be a complex activity.  For tips on  effective searching please follow this link:

Access to Research Frequently Asked Questions (external website)

For access to the portal use the link below:

Access to Research Portal (external website)

Access to Research was launched in response to recommendations from the Finch Group, a government committee which investigated how publicly funded research could be made more available. The articles and conference proceedings are ideal for small businesses, researchers and students among others.

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Can I find information on local organisations?

Yes, most libraries keep a folder or file of local events and organisations. Library staff are trained to locate information and contact details, either on or off-line.

You can also check the East Riding events to find information on local societies and organisations, sports clubs and children's centre events.

Local Links is a directory of groups, organisations, activities and services available throughout the East Riding:

Local Links (external website)

To find your nearest sports club, please use our sports club finder. You will need to select the sport you are interested in. Top of page

Do you have health information in the library?

You can borrow books on a range of health topics from your local library. Use our online library catalogue to search by author, title, subject and key word and reserve the title you want for free. You will need your library card number and PIN.

In addition, local libraries have a range of mental health and wellbeing books, chosen by NHS professionals. To find the contact details for your local library, please use our library finder.

You can also search the Digital Reference Library for health information. For details of local health, mental health, support, and wellbeing organisations use our Local Links directory.

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Do you have copies of Ordnance Survey maps in the library?

Branch libraries have Ordnance Survey Landranger maps of their local area for reference use in the library only.

Beverley Reference Library holds a complete set of Ordnance Survey Landranger maps and select titles in the Explorer series. They cover England, Scotland and Wales and are available for loan. Reference only copies of local areas and select places of interest are always available for viewing in Beverley Reference Library.

Highly detailed interactive historical and current GIS (Geographic Information System) Ordnance Survey maps are available to view on selected public computers in Beverley Reference Library. Find your street on a Victorian map, locate an address, see parish boundaries, school catchment areas, and generally view maps in a wide range of scales.

To find the contact details for Beverley Library, please use our library finder.

To borrow Ordnance Survey maps check the library catalogue. You will need your library card number and PIN. Information on how to obtain your PIN is provided on the join the library pageof this site.

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Do you hold telephone and postcode directories in the library?

Beverley Reference Library holds up to date copies of residential and business
telephone directories for the UK.

Most branch libraries hold local telephone directories.

To find a residential or a business telephone number try the following websites:

British Telecom (external website)

Yellow pages (external website)

For international numbers try:

Infobel (external website)

Postcodes can be found on the Royal Mail website postcode finder.

Royal Mail (external website)

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Can I study local and family history at the library?

Yes, the library and archives services have a wide range of resources to help you study family and local history.

All libraries including the travelling Libraries have computers so that you can consult Library Edition and Findmypast. With these sites you can access historic census returns and a huge range of other historical information.

All libraries carry a small collection of local history books for loan and there are specialist titles to help you trace your family tree. Use our library catalogue to find the books you want and request for them to be delivered to your local library. You will need your library card and PIN for this service. More information on how to get your PIN is available on the join the library page.

Some libraries have drop in advice sessions organised by the East Yorkshire Family History Society. To see if your local branch holds these sessions, please use our library finder or the list below.

East Yorkshire Family History Society Help Desks (word 307kb opens in new window)

You can download Your Family Tree magazine for free. Read more about eMagazinesto find out how to sign up.

Bridlington library, King Street and Goole library have extensive local studies sections for those towns and nearby villages where you may well be able to find sources to help your search. 

Further information about Bridlington and Goole Local Studies Libraries is available from the following leaflets.

Bridlington Local Studies Leaflet (pdf 58mb opens in new window)

 Goole Local Studies Leaflet (pdf 49mb opens in new window)


The East Riding Archives & Local Studies, based at the Treasure House in Beverley, collects records and printed works relating to the East Riding's heritage.  If you're looking to trace the history of your East Riding ancestors, discover the history of your house, or simply find out more about your local community's past, then we may be able to help you. With a vast collection of local historic records dating back to the 12th century, and a library of local history books, the East Riding Archives & Local Studies is an essential destination for any local history enthusiast or family historian with roots in East Yorkshire.

We also have on-site access to major family history websites including Ancestry and Findmypast, where you can search the Yorkshire Collection for free. We also provide free unlimited access to the British Newspaper Archive where you can view over 15 million pages covering the 1700's to the 1950's. For more information about our services please see our Archives, Family and Local History pages.

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Do libraries have free WiFi?

Yes. All our static libraries have free unlimited WiFi.

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