Friday 20 December 2019

In 2019, the NLI saw highest visitor numbers in 10 years

The National Library of Ireland (NLI) has already seen more than 280,000 visits during 2019 – its highest visitor numbers of the decade – in a busy year which saw the unveiling of state-of-the-art book storage at the NLI, the launch of a new digital collecting initiative and the opening of the Museum of Literature Ireland (MoLI) in partnership with University College Dublin. These and other highlights are contained in an end-of-year video released by the Library.

Reflecting on the year, Director of the NLI, Dr Sandra Collins said: “As 2019 draws to a close and a new decade comes into view, we are also looking back on a remarkably exciting year for the National Library.

"As Ireland’s memory-keeper, we added thousands of books, newspapers, manuscripts, photographs and more to our collections this year, including the writer’s archive of JP Donleavy, while hundreds of thousands of volumes were moved to new, safe storage, where they will be preserved for generations to come.

“As technology changes, so does the way in which we preserve and share the story of Ireland. We also had 20 million engagements across our digital platforms in 2019, archived 550 websites, and digitised 23,000 items – ensuring our physical collections are available to as broad an audience as possible – while our partnership with UCD to create the Museum of Literature Ireland also allows us to showcase more of the Library’s treasures and expertise.”

Some of the highlights of 2019 include:

  • More than 280,000 visits were made to the Library’s various sites
  • 350,000 volumes were moved to new, safe storage
  • 200,000 visits were made to six free exhibitions
  • 29,000 people attended events, tours and workshops
  • 27,000 research visits were made to the Library’s reading rooms
  • 20 million online engagements were made across the Library’s digital platforms
  • Thousands of books, newspapers, manuscripts, photographs and more were acquired
  • 23,000 items were digitised in the Library’s digital studios
  • 550 websites were archived
  • Six arms were granted by the Chief Herald of Ireland
  • 15 exhibitions travelled all over Ireland

You can find out more below in this short video from the NLI (I recommend switching the audio off... the music is painful).