Chetham's Library
Chetham's Library
4.5
11:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Monday
11:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Tuesday
11:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Wednesday
11:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Thursday
11:30 AM - 3:30 PM
Friday
11:00 AM - 3:30 PM
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About
Chetham’s Library has been in continuous use as a public library for over 350 years. It is housed in a beautiful sandstone building dating from 1421 which was built to accommodate the priests of Manchester’s Collegiate Church.
Suggested duration
< 1 hour
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The area
Address
How to get there
  • Victoria • 3 min walk
  • Exchange Square • 4 min walk
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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4.5
387 reviews
Excellent
297
Very good
81
Average
5
Poor
1
Terrible
3

Mick1a
3 contributions
Nov 2022 • Friends
I visited Chethams Library on 9th November with 5 friends after booking on line and joined the 11 o'clock tour. Sue, the guide, was very welcoming and throughout the tour, which lasted over an hour, was most informative and clear. Excellent.

Chethams Library is definitely worth visiting and I recommend it not only to visitors to Manchester but to residents of the city. A real gem! Go and see it.
Written December 11, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Mike
Glossop, UK404 contributions
May 2021 • Solo
Remarkable survivor right in the middle of the city dating to at least 1470, although probably older parts of the original Norman manor house are contained within the walls.

Fascinating tour and very reasonably priced to see such a gem. The tour includes viewing a changing sample of objects from the library’s collection as well as the building. The guide was friendly and knowledgeable.

Not sure whether there is any step free access available as the library itself it upstairs.
Written June 26, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Healthtouch - Deirdre Carolina
London, UK292 contributions
Apr 2022
Wow what a gem. Incredible place. I booked a tour for Chetham's Library on a recent visit to Manchester. In April 2022 it was a 2pm tour and you
meet at the gates of the Music school.

Finding the place is a little tricky. This was very helpful - "The location of Chetham’s, which is located opposite the National Football Museum. Entry to the Library is through the main gate on Long Millgate, M3 1SB, just off Cathedral Gardens."

Sian Louise was our guide, she was an incredibly good speaker, funny, full of stories and history........... clearly loves the place and works incredibly hard. The tour takes 75 - 90 mins

A real gem if you are looking for something different.
Written April 23, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Ritasaurus
Greensborough, Australia265 contributions
Mar 2022 • Friends
We turned up thinking we could just have a walk through the library, but at the entrance we were told that it was only open for guided tours.

Then as my cousin was holding his phone up, the staff at the gate walked out and told us that we were not allowed to take photographs. Although we didn’t take a photo at the actual gate, the staff member made us open up the photos on our phone and we had taken one earlier from further away out on the street and he made us delete it and then also go into the recently deleted folder and delete it from there as well. This was due to students being onsite, which we understood, but there were no signs on the outside of the building stating no photographs were allowed.
Written March 12, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Bernadette N
Oldham, UK4 contributions
May 2022 • Friends
Had an amazing tour of the Library today and just wanted to say thanks to the tour guide who made the experience so memorable. She was so informative and made the whole tour a delight. It was like going back in time and we were made to feel part of the place. I cannot recommend this tour enough, so if you haven’t been then put it on your list.
Written May 6, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

JRMADA
United States3,255 contributions
Sep 2022
What a great way to spend 90 minutes of our time! We felt like we were in the set of Harry Potter somewhere in Hogwarts. This place is fascinating and the tour guides are the best. The history here is palpable, and one of the most memorable experiences we’ve had so far. This is the place where the “birth” of the Communist Manifesto took place. Marx and Engle did research here. Well worth the price of admission. Go see it.
Written September 7, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

MagWIan
London, UK8 contributions
Aug 2019 • Friends
Having walked past the entrance for a decade I discovered the library after visiting the fabulous Turton Tower. The library has a wonderfully historic feeling and though escorted as a group you can enjoy the space quietly. For those who commute to and work in Manchester it’s really worth visiting this- the oldest public library in Britain
Written March 6, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

bsandrs
Portsmouth, UK23,075 contributions
Jul 2019
Chetham’s Library and School of Music are a central feature of the life of the City. A calm oasis surrounded by the Cathedral, Victoria Railway Station and even the National Football Museum, some of the buildings within the complex date back to the beginning of the 15th century. There are many treasures to discover and enjoy starting, of course, with the architecture, but also a “chained” library and connections to Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. Visiting is by by guided tour and whilst out of the main tourism season it may be possible to book on the day, it is better to plan ahead using the website for a timed slot, meeting in advance at the main gate. Our guide was excellent with great knowledge and humour and gave us and the others in the group a memorable tour which was one of the highlights of our stay in the City.
Written August 18, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Maire S
Cannock, UK77 contributions
Sep 2018 • Friends
Attended with a friend and was given a free tour with about 10 others that was both informative and interesting. It made the library come alive in its various incarnations. Had my picture taken where Karl Marx and Engels met and did their research. Best spot in the library, it was a wise choice on their part.
Tour lasts about 40-45 mins and runs hourly on the hour. See their website for exact times. As the library is part of the Chethams Music school, visitors need to be respectful and aware of child protection issues and conform to rules.
Written September 18, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

BRIAN R
Holywell, UK242 contributions
Jan 2015 • Couples
It is like going back into the 19th Century, a HARRY POTTER location-don't miss it, the wood panelling is a delight
Written January 28, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Chetham's Library (Manchester) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go

Frequently Asked Questions about Chetham's Library

Chetham's Library is open:
  • Mon - Thu 11:30 AM - 3:30 PM
  • Fri - Fri 11:00 AM - 3:30 PM
Buy tickets in advance on Tripadvisor. If you book with Tripadvisor, you can cancel at least 24 hours before the start date of your tour for a full refund.

We recommend booking Chetham's Library tours ahead of time to secure your spot. If you book with Tripadvisor, you can cancel up to 24 hours before your tour starts for a full refund. See all 5 Chetham's Library tours on Tripadvisor