The Libraries

The Hall

The Libraries

The Libraries form half the area of the first floor of Family Wing and are known as the Manuscript, Classical and Long Library.

Until the early 19th century, the Manuscript Library was the principal bedroom, which gave Thomas William Coke, convenient access to his library at any time of the day or night. However, by 1816, knowledgeable friends convinced Coke of Norfolk that he should retrieve the valuable manuscripts stored in one of the tower rooms - that were at risk from damp and neglect - and turn the bedroom into a library. Some of the manuscripts are from Sir Edward Coke’s original library.

The Classical Library was once the ante room to Coke of Norfolk’s bedroom, but when he converted it into a library, this room became home to a number of early printed books.

The Long Library is most used by the family for entertaining. It occupies the entire west front of Family Wing, and is 54ft long by 18ft wide.

The room was designed by William Kent and a concealed door to the right of the fireplace leads to the main staircase of Family Wing, which would have allowed servants access to the room, without disturbing people in any of the other rooms on either side.

The libraries are frequently open for public view; however, opening of these private areas of the Hall is at the family’s discretion and cannot be guaranteed on the day of your visit.