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Pepys Library Visiting and Opening Hours

Information for individuals, groups and educational leaders wishing to visit the Pepys Library.

Individual Visitors - 'Drop in' Visits

The Pepys Library is open to view on a 'drop in' basis, free of charge, on the following dates:

Tuesday 4 October 2022 - Saturday 17 December 2022, 2pm-4pm (Closed on Sundays)

Tuesday 3 January 2023 - Saturday 25 March 2023, 2pm-4pm (Closed on Sundays)

Monday 17th April 2023 - Saturday 9th September 2023, Mondays-Fridays 2pm-4pm, and Saturdays 11am-1pm (Closed on Sundays, and on the following dates: 6th May, 21st June, 22nd June)

Due to the historic nature of the building, access to the library is only available via a flight of stairs. For the safety and security of the historic collection, children under six years old are not permitted in the library. Please note that photography or filming is not permitted when visiting the library. Non-commercial groups of up to 10 people can visit during public opening hours. 

Individual Visitors - Ticketed Tours

The Pepys Librarian also runs tours of the library on selected Friday mornings for visitors aged 12+ who wish to learn more about Pepys and his library. Booking a ticket in advance is required:  

Pepys Library Tour Booking

Group Visits 

Groups larger than 10, or commercial tour groups of any size, are required to book in advance for a tour of the Library, to take place on a date and time agreed with the Pepys Librarian. A group tour consists of a 45-minute talk about Samuel Pepys and his library, with a further 15 minutes to look at the displays. There is a charge for group tours.

The maximum group size is limited to 25 people, larger groups may be able to be accommodated by the running of two tours ‘back to back’.

If you wish to book a tour, please contact the Library, including the group leader’s name, contact email and address. Please let us know in advance if you’re interested in a particular aspect of the collection as it might be possible to take account of this in the tour. Due to the historic nature of the building, access to the library is only available via a flight of stairs.

Educational groups

The College welcomes schools visits, arranged outside of public opening hours, usually on Thursday mornings from October to March (though other times may be available). Teachers are advised to contact the Library at an early stage with details of student ages and any particular interests and the relevance of the visit to work for the National Curriculum, for example, the Great Fire of London or Scientific Writing.

School groups are limited to 15 in the Library at a time. Larger groups will be asked to split into smaller groups. There is a supervision level requirement for an educational group; you will be informed of the minimum number of accompanying staff when your booking is confirmed. A Key Stage 1 Education Pack is available for follow-up work.

The charge for educational groups including a Key Stage 1 Education Pack is £3.50 per child, teachers and accompanying adults are free. Free tours for school groups ages 6-18 are available as part of the Magdalene Outreach programme, please contact the Library for further details. Due to the historic nature of the building, access to the library is only available via a flight of stairs.

Images © Sara Rawlinson. To reuse any of these images, please enquire with the Pepys Library.