Pressing deadline coming up? Get yourself down to one of the top spaces to study in London and let your inspiration flow, courtesy of great coffee, a change of scenery and some peace and quiet. Here are some of the best.
Barbican Library is situated on the second floor of the city of London’s Barbican Centre, Europe’s largest performing-arts centre. It is a split-level library with historical books and a study area on its upper floor, and there is a music zone, complete with plug-in and play digital pianos, in the lower area. If you want to take out resources from the library, you’ll need to either work or live in the City of London – but all members of the public are free to use the facilities.
The Wellcome Library, part of the Wellcome Trust, is one of the world’s major resources for the study of medical history. Membership to the library is free and you don’t need to be a medical student or professional to visit, as it’s open to members of the public. The library is well equipped for all your study needs – there is a group room, an assistive study room for audio software and plenty of computers to use if you’ve left your laptop at home.
Few study spaces include free admission to the world’s largest museum of applied and decorative arts and design. The National Art Library, on the first floor of the Victoria & Albert Museum, invites visitors to spend study breaks marvelling at more than seven miles of fascinating exhibitions. Aside from the library there are three additional dedicated study rooms that also offer access to the museum’s reference collection.
Afternoon tea at Bea’s of Bloomsbury makes any day better. Whatever the study at hand, a few choux buns and a warm cup of tea will make all the difference. Take advantage of their outdoor seating on a sunny day, and let the hustle and bustle of passers-by create the white noise necessary to keep your focus sharp.
Nick Dauk contributed additional reporting to this article.