Talbot Library

Scope and Content

With significant donations, the Talbot Library grew in size to approximately 50,000 books, and became a major reference library of Catholic history, theology, and spirituality. There is a sizeable collection of Irish studies material, missals and other liturgical texts, seminarial works, and books on politics, history, English literature, art and architecture. The collection also includes a substantial number of early printed books (pre-1801), housed in the Special Collections vault. The collection remains uncatalogued but is available to browse and the original card catalogue is accessible for consultation.

Administrative / Biographical History

The Talbot Library was named after William Talbot, a wealthy Lancashire cotton manufacturer, who in 1849 provided the money with which the Jesuits built the first Catholic school and chapel in the Maudland area of Preston. In 1988, the school was closed and Bishop John Brewer, then Bishop of Lancaster, established a Catholic library in the former school premises. Donations of books and journals came in from presbyteries and convents in the diocese, and the library was officially opened in 1992.

Access Information

Please consult the Visiting the Library webpage containing access information for external visitors. The archives and special collections are available for consultation by special appointment only. To arrange an appointment please email specialcollections@hope.ac.uk . Allow at least 24 hours notice. Please note that, in line with other archives and special collections, we require personal identification, and may, in some circumstances, ask you to provide references from your research supervisor or other suitable person or body. Please refer to the Access the Collections webpage for detailed information.

Acquisition Information

The Talbot Library collection was transferred to the Sheppard-Worlock Library in 2013, following the closure of the Talbot Library in Preston. A special celebration was held to commemorate the official transfer and the Bishop of Lancaster the Rt Rev Michael Campbell OSA unveiled a plaque to recognise the permanent loan of the collection for the benefit of religious studies scholars at Liverpool Hope University and throughout the North West. Books on loan from the Diocese of Shrewsbury were transferred to Ushaw College Library at Durham University and regional archival material deposited with the Lancashire Archives and Record Office.

Other Finding Aids

The Talbot Library remains uncatalogued, however, the original card catalogue is available for consultation in The Sheppard-Worlock Library. The Talbot Library and the Irish Studies classification schemes, the Music Scores catalogue and the Catholic Truth Society (CTS) pamphlets listing are available to download from the Archives & Special Collections Finding Aids webpage.

Separated Material

On the closure of the Talbot Library in Preston, material on loan from the Shrewsbury Diocese, including the Moriaty Collection, was transferred to the Ushaw College Library at Durham University and the regional archives deposited with Lancashire Archives and Records Office .

The collection of books and ephemeral material relating to Cardinal John Henry Newman (now Saint), has been amalgamated with other Newman source material from other existing collections to form the John Henry Newman Collection in The Sheppard-Worlock Library. This collection is fully catalogued.

The Loughlin Collection of books by and about the English writer, philosopher, lay theologian and literary and art critic, G.K. Chesterton and the English-French writer and historian, Hilaire Belloc, has been maintained as a stand-alone collection with the Talbot Library at Liverpool Hope University.

The Cornwell Collection, donated to the Talbot Library by Mr Anthony Cornwell, a regular user of the Talbot Library, was acquired by Liverpool Hope University and remains a stand-alone collection.

Conditions Governing Use

Photocopies and photographic images can be supplied for private study purposes only, depending on the condition and size of the original documents, as long as it complies with copyright law and Data Protection legislation.

To reproduce an image for publication, either for personal or commercial purposes, requires written consent from the rights holder. Please refer to the Access the Collections webpage for detailed information on restrictions to access, digital reproduction and image licensing.