Later today I’ll be taking the train to the Mitchell Library for the final day of Aye Write 2014. It’s such a beautiful building – time for a tour methinks.
The small entrance on North Street is the one I use.
Walking round the building brings you to the main entrance on Granville Street, which is much more spectacular.
Once inside, it can get very busy.
The auditorium is just on the left and the main cafe to the right. Walking back through the library, the business centre and around the corridor, the book shop is on the right (separate post to follow) and the grand main hall is on the left. How’s this for a ceiling?
Impressive even with a missing pane?
Opposite the main hall is the grand staircase.
Half way up, there’s an excellent view of the inside of the intricate building dome.
Turn right to the Burns Room, where the poet himself is to be found guarding the library’s valuable collection of poetry.
Back to the top of the staircase now, and turn left. This brings you to the Jeffrey room which houses a beautiful collection of first editions, fine bindings and illustrated books, which were donated to the library in 1902 by Robert Jeffrey. The terms of the bequest were that the collection was to be displayed in its entirety. The result is rather fabulous.
Back to the staircase again. (I wandered up and down this corridor and staircase quite a lot during the festival.) A quick peek over the banister shows you the view to the exit back to North Street.
At this time of the year, it can be quite dark when leaving but the library at night is really stunning.
Look carefully and there she is, at the top of the dome: Literature is wishing you a safe journey home and a speedy return.
It’s a beautiful venue for a literary festival, don’t you agree?