Pride 2021: Glasgow Women's Library contains the UK's largest archive of LGBT Historical collections

As Pride month comes to a close, an iconic Glasgow library reminds people they can check out their LGBT archive all year round – the largest collection of its kind in the UK.

Material in the collection spans from the 1920s to the present day and includes archives and artefacts of UK and International LGBT History.

The Glasgow Women’s Library is the only accredited museum in the whole of the UK that is dedicated to woman’s lives, achievements and their history.

It operates a lending library, holds archive collections and runs various public events.

Read More

Read More
Devolved governments will be able to issue subsidies following EU departure

Their LGBT collection is the largest in the UK and focuses on the lives, and fight for the rights of LGBT women across Scotland, the UK and the world.

Their website reveals that included in this treasure trove of history are “leaflets, tapes, videos, t-shirts, press clippings, banners, placards mugs and badges relating to a wide variety of subjects, organisations, campaigns and causes.”

This is alongside first editions and rare books, Section 28 campaign materials, LGBTQ publications such as DIVA and Shebang, a host of literature – both fiction and non fiction – and artefacts to help build knowledge of and understand the fight for LGBT rights.

Pride 2021: Glasgow Women's Library contains the UK's largest archive of LGBT Historical collections

A prominent section of the collection is The Lesbian Archive, first started in London and later moved to Glasgow in the mid 90s.

The GWL explains: “Like many of its sister organisations, the archive went through turbulent periods in its history.

"The political landscape of the 1980s and early 1990s periodically put pressure on funding and laws such as Section 28 caused confusion and turbulence for the projects like LAIC.

"By 1995, funding for the archive became impossible and new premises were sought.

"Glasgow Women’s Library was considered to be a good home for the collection as it had space to keep the collection accessible to women.”

The archive is made up of donations. A statement on the website adds: “We collect all material which is relevant to the lives, histories and achievements of all LGBTQ women.”

The Glasgow Women’s Library can be found at Landressy St in Glasgow, and more information is available here.

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by Coronavirus impacts our advertisers.

If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription.


Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.