Legal Deposit Print and More

Collections / Reader Services - Posted 05-04-2023

Here is a selection of some of the many thousands of books that reach the National Library through Legal Deposit every year. As one of the Legal Deposit Libraries for the UK and Ireland we receive a copy of nearly every book and periodical published in England, Scotland and Ireland – as well as Wales. It’s difficult sometimes for people to grasp the extent of our Legal Deposit collection. So if you’re interested in the Amazon rain forest or the mysteries of the human mind, want to see the latest issue of Poetry Wales or Four Four Two, want to understand how a fusion reactor is likely to work, or just pore over the novels of your favourite author, pop into our Reading Room with your reader’s ticket. We have almost everything for ever.

On the 6th of April this year we will be celebrating Non Print or Electronic Legal Deposit along with the five other legal deposit libraries. Ten years ago the National Library of Wales, the British Library, the National Library of Scotland, Trinity College, Dublin, the Bodleian Library, Oxford and Cambridge University Library were granted the right to receive electronic publications in addition to those in print. That doesn’t only mean a change in format from a book in your hand to text on a screen. The switch to electronic publications has also increased the amount of knowledge we have to offer you.

Everyone is now familiar with e-books and e-periodicals and many hundreds of thousands of these are now available in the Reading Room of the National Library but not everyone realises that the world of ‘publishing’ includes all the websites of UK webspace. Imagine how much of this material disappears every year as web pages are updated. The role of UKWA the UK Web Archive is to ensure that the content of BBC Wales, Diverse Cymru or the Football Association of Wales web pages as well as many thousands of other websites, big and small, from Wales and the rest of the UK, are kept safe for the future.


You can search the catalogue on our website here:

Robert Lacey
Head of Collection Development

This post is also available in: Welsh


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