Bideford library

Brief description

The library was designed by Alfred Dunn, of Birmingham, and built by H Glover and Son, of Bideford. The library is a single storied building, next to the town hall – the rear part of which had been built in 1850. Two years after the library opened, a museum was added, although that later moved out.

Awarded Grade II listing in 1973.

Current status: Still open as a public library, run by Libraries Unlimited on behalf of Devon county council. (2016)

  • Year grant given (if known):
  • Amount of grant:
  • Year opened: 7 February 1906 by Mr C.S. Carnegie from Northam, a relative of Andrew Carnegie.

Photo of library today (2010):




Old photo of library (postcard):



Yes, we visited this library, during a holiday in Devon in 2010.

Web links:


Exeter library

Brief description

A compressed timeline:

1909 – grant offered
1911 – grant accepted and new library announced
1917 – scheme reconsidered due to WW1
1921 – returned to idea, funding still available
1924 – council agreed planning could start
1928 – foundation stone laid
1930 – new library opened

Then, 1942 – library bombed and burned out – but restored after the war
1950s – building housed Devon Records Office
1965 – new library built next door
Early 2000s – became registry office
2010 – refurbished: upper floors became student flats, ground floor rented to firm of solicitors

  • Year grant given: 1911
  • Amount of grant:
  • Year opened (and by who – if known): 1930

Photo of library today:



I’ve visited Exeter library several times – in 2015 and 2016.

Web links:

Exeter Memories (which contains a lot more detail on the timeline above)