The manuscripts divide roughly into three groups:
- 1. Two medieval manuscripts (Bamburgh Sel. 6, a liturgical psalter, and Sel. 25, a psalterium, etc.) and a 16th/17th century Russian Church Slavonic psalter.
- 2. [Located in Durham Cathedral Library and not included in the statement of extent above] Some 40 music manuscripts, secular and sacred, instrumental and vocal, largely 17th-18th century, mostly copied by or for members of the Sharp family,but also including music from the collection of the Hon. Edward Finch (1664-1738).
- 3. Over 20 volumes and files of papers, mainly records of the Sharps' book collections and the subsequent history of the library at Bamburgh Castle, but also including a commonplace-book of John Sharp III, an 18th century gunnery manual, a19th century enquiry into Northumberland schools, and a 19th century account of the discovery of an ancient coffin at Chatton, Northumberland.