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Library collections

  • Our extensive collection of over 55,000 volumes is available to consult within the library or we can provide extracts from most of our collection via our document supply Lawdocs service. The library has around 3,500 current legal practitioner textbooks, a vast collection of law reports and legal journals and complete runs of local, public and private acts. We also have extensive parliamentary holdings including Hansard debates from 1804 and House of Commons papers from 1801 which include command papers. You can search our extensive holdings on Library Search.

    We have material on the following jurisdictions:

    • Channel Islands and the Isle of Man
    • England and Wales
    • The EU
    • Ireland
    • Northern Ireland
    • Scotland

    Read our collection management policy (PDF 211kb)

    Read our selection policy (PDF 249kb)

    Text books

    We have over 19,000 legal practitioner textbooks dating from the 16th century to the present including over 3,500 current legal practitioner textbooks covering the law of England and Wales. We can also provide access within the library to an number of key practitioner textbooks via LexisLibrary.


    We have more than 1,100 journal titles dating from the 18th century to the present and we currently subscribe to over 60 legal journals. We can also provide access within the library to an extensive collection of journals via online databases such as LexisLibrary and Westlaw.

    Law reports

    We have over 800 law report titles dating from the 15th century to the present. We can also provide access within the library to an extensive collection of law reports via online databases such as Justis, LexisLibrary and Westlaw.

    UK Government and parliamentary publications

    We have a substantial collection of UK Government and Parliamentary publications which includes primary and secondary legislation as well as local and personal Acts for England and Wales. We also hold House of Commons/Lords Bills, Hansard debates from 1804, Standing Committee Debates, Command Papers and House of Commons Papers from 1801.

    Other British jurisdictions

    We hold primary legislation from Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, Jersey and the Isle of Man including acts of the Scottish Parliament from 1999 and selected Scottish Statutory Instruments; all Acts of the Northern Ireland Assembly from 2000, with Northern Ireland Statutes and Orders in Council from 1921 and Statutory Rules of Northern Ireland from 1922. The Library also has Acts of the Oireachtas from 1924 from the Republic of Ireland; Isle of Man Acts of the Tynwald from 1971 and Jersey Statutes from 1771.

    We also hold selected journals and law reports.

    Other jurisdictions

    We hold primary legislation from Ireland for the period 1310-1800 and 1922-2009 as well as selected journals and law reports. We also hold a few key law reports for the Commonwealth and New Zealand.

    EU material

    We have an excellent collection of European Union legal material. We hold all primary and secondary legislation; the Official Journal 'L' and 'C' series are held from the start in 1952. We also hold Commission Documents from 1989 to 2002 on microfiche. The official series of cases, Reports of Cases before the Court, the Common Market Law Reports and other law reports are collected. We have comprehensive indexes and databases for all this information.

    Specialist directories, dictionaries and periodicals are held, as well as a good collection of current awareness tools, such as Europolitics , to enable you to keep up to date.

    We also have a substantial collection of textbooks on general and specialised aspects of EU law.

    Corporate Archive

    Our Corporate Archive collection dates back to the beginning of the Society in 1825. The collection includes the Society's earliest corporate material such as minutes of its first meeting, Lewis Vulliamy's architectural drawings for the Society's Chancery Lane headquarters as well as our charters and grant of arms. The collection also includes publications on the regulation of the solicitors' profession, Law Society and Solicitors Regulation Authority responses to government consultations, Council and Committee papers and a range of photographs of past Presidents. We also hold a copy of all Law Society priced publications.
    Visit our Corporate Archive webpage


    The library is grateful to those who have made donations and offer unsolicited material to the Library. Many of the items accepted would not otherwise be obtained by the Library and these provide a valuable contribution to our collection and the resources we are able to make available to our members.

    All donations are evaluated for condition and relevance to the Library's collections before being added to stock. Ownership is transferred to the Library on acceptance of a donation.

    Any accepted donations will be interfiled with other material and will not be retained as a discrete collection. The Library reserves the right to refuse donations and dispose of items, either at time of receipt or subsequently. Disposal may be by sale, offer to an alternative institution or by disposal in an environmentally responsible manner.