The library’s primary purpose is to resource the teaching and learning undertaken at Bristol Baptist College. It is stocked with over 25,000 books and other media to meet the needs of ministerial, theology, and children and youth ministry students, as well as for work at postgraduate level. There are runs of more than 130 periodicals, of which 50 are current, and access to electronic journals and databases is provided through the universities which validate the college’s courses.
The library has recently been enhanced by the addition of a substantial collection of books relating to Anabaptist history and praxis. Alongside other changes needed to accommodate this donation a programme of reorganisation and reclassification has been undertaken which is still in progress.
In addition there are holdings of manuscript and printed source material on Baptist and broader dissenting history, and also College archives dating back to the foundation. Material showing the nature of early teaching, and records of the library and its use are of particular significance. Artefacts held include portraits of former staff, items associated with significant Baptist figures, and communion plate. Alumni records contain brief biographical details of all former Bristol Baptist College students.
Researchers wishing to use the Special Collections should contact the librarian.
The College is pleased to be associated with the Dissenting Academies Online project, where further details of our history may be found, alongside a wealth of other information.