The Venue

The magnificently refurbished Central Library is ‘not only the city’s study, but also the city’s living room’. Alongside an unrivalled hub of information and education, it’s also a new place to meet and socialise, a place to engage with cultural output, a place that invites you to think and contribute, to be entertained and provoked. For the city’s events organisers, festival bookers, arts promoters and those who make the cultural calendar buzz, it boasts a number of rooms and spaces under one roof. The prestige of the building speaks for itself, but the practicalities of the city centre location with excellent transport links, the adaptability of the Performance Space, the access to archival, technical and media resources – these speak directly to the needs of artists and promoters. Music, drama, dance, comedy, spoken word, city festivals and family activities all play out here.

Our spaces

The Performance Space The Performance Space is housed on the ground floor. Internally, the room sits alongside Archives+, with the landmark Midland Hotel forming the external backdrop beyond the grand floor-to-ceiling windows. The space can be subdivided into 3 distinct areas. Users can opt for a full black-out for projection screenings with equipment. Full audio facilities are also in place to offer a versatile home for a variety of events. The whole space comfortably seats 150 theatre style or 60 cabaret style.


If you’re interested in using the Performance Space for hosting your cultural event, contact [email protected] with your proposal.



Central Library and the Town Hall Extension feature a Combined Cooling and Heating Plant (CCHP) which generates electricity for use in the Library and reduces the amount of electricity needing to be imported from the grid. This on site electricity generation system produces heat as a by product. In the winter this heat is captured and used to heat the building, and in summer operation the waste heat is used to power an absorption chiller that cools the building.
The lighting systems are designed for energy efficiency, and utilise automatic controls to reduce the lighting load in areas benefiting from daylight or when not occupied.
All electricity imported to the Library to supplement the on site generation comes from certified renewable sources such as wind, solar and hydro.