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Central Library

Contact details

Address: Katharine Street, Croydon, CR9 1ET
Telephone: 020 3700 1034 or 020 3700 1038

Croydon Central Library welcome

Opening hours

  • Monday: 9am to 7pm
  • Tuesday: 9am to 6pm
  • Wednesday: 9am to 6pm
  • Thursday: 9:30am to 6pm
  • Friday: 9am to 6pm
  • Saturday: 9am to 5pm
  • Sunday: Closed

Check accessibility details on the DisabledGo websiteAccessibility

Check accessibility details on the DisabledGo website.


  • Books, CDs and DVDs for loan
  • Children's library and events - see below
  • Local studies library and archives
  • Enquiry service
  • WiFi internet access
  • WiFi symbolFree access to PCs including the internet
  • Newspapers and periodicals
  • Community information
  • Business information service
  • Lesbian Gay Bi and Trans collection
  • Reference materials for most open university undergraduate courses
  • Books in community languages
  • Wordwise collection for children with dyslexia
  • Homework help clubs - see below
  • Reading groups - see below
  • Café
  • Public toilets
  • 102 study spaces plus 35 laptop use study spaces


A full list of library events can be found in our Events Calendar.

Children's events

Children's Library Improvements:

To allow the extensive work to be completed the children's library will be closed from Monday 21 November to Saturday 10 December. The library will re-open at 9am on Monday 12 December.
During this period a selection of children's books and access to the computers will be available on Level 1 of the Central Library. Unfortunately, we will not have space to run the usual range of children's activities during the work. You are, of course, very welcome to go along to activities at any of the other 12 libraries across the borough. More information here.

We run the following free drop-in events for young children:

  • Weekly Rhymetime sessions for babies and young toddlers: Wednesdays 11-11:30am, Thursdays 10:30-11am, 11.30am - 12noon and Saturdays 11-11:30am
  • Chatterbooks reading group for 7-11 years, once a month on a Monday 4pm-5pm.

Further library events can be found in our Events Calendar. You can also see events for children and adults that are taking place in the community.

Homework help clubs

These take place in the Children's Library for 9 to 11 year-olds and on Level 2 for 12 to 16 year-olds.

Specially trained helpers offer support with homework assignments. Students benefit from space to study, access to a wide selection of books, word processing and supervised internet access.

The clubs operate at these times:

  • Term Time Only: Tuesday and Thursday 4pm - 6pm, Saturday 2pm - 5pm
  • Summer and Christmas holidays: Closed.

Reading Hack

We're looking for Hackers!

Reading Hack is a programme for young people aged 13-19.

Hackers get to produce reading activities called hacks, build their creative skills and inspire others to read.

If you would like to become a Hacker, join us on Mondays @ 4.30pm, fortnightly.

You can find out more about Reading Hack here.

Careers, training and learning advice sessions

The National Careers Service is delivered by Learning Curves, CALAT on the ground floor of Croydon Clocktower, Katharine Street.

Business Information Services

Workshops are held twice a month looking at the online and printed information available for people wanting to start their own business. There is also information about free business start up courses run in the local area.

Reading groups

There are four reading groups for adults at the Central Library. These meet:

  • The second Saturday of the month at 11am - meet at the Level 2 enquiry desk
  • The second Monday of the month 6pm-7pm in the Level 2 meeting room.
  • Rainbow Reading group for lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender people meets at 2.30pm on Level 1 on the last thursday of the month:
  • Non-fiction reading group meet on the third Monday of the month at 1pm in the Level 2 meeting room

Food waste bags

The food waste bags are now priced at £5.99 for 100.

You can now buy these from all Croydon Libraries.

Green waste bags

You can now buy these from all Croydon Libraries. We sell them for £1 each.

Our display boards are available for use free of charge to advertise your club or society.