Lest We Forget

The 1st July 2016 marks the 100th Anniversary of the Battle of the Somme.

At 7.30am on the morning of the battle thousands of young men rose from their trenches and walked across No Man’s Land towards the enemy trenches.

On that single day the British Army suffered 57,000 casualties of which 19,000 men died.  The objective on that first day are shown in the map below:


For families on the home front, newspapers and magazines provided information. Seeing images of the battle meant reading the papers or magazines.

Here is a typical image of “Going over the Top” from our copy of the Illustrated London News from the later stages of the Battle of the Somme, showing that the dominion troops were heavily engaged:

Image from the Illustrated London News Oct 26th 1916


An edition shows British troops  capturing Montauban in late July:

The Great British Offensive North of the Somme: Troops Advancing to the Capture of Montauban. Illustrated London News 22nd July 1916


You can read daily coverage of the Somme battle in the Times Digital Archive and I selected part of one of the first editorials/ leaders to come out on July 3rd where indications are that the battle was going favourably:


Contrast this with the Roll of Honour of Friday 4th August 1916:


Punch Magazine took a different view on the seemingly never-ending battle as we can see from this image of October 25th 1916:

Punch Historical Archive 1841-1992


Having visited the Western Front several years ago I was struck by the openness of the landscape, its tranquillity. The scars remain of course and the area is populated by cemeteries and memorials along the frontline.

Some of the areas which I found very moving on my visit included:

The Lochnagar Mine Crater at La Boisselle on the Somme which was sprung at 7.28am on the 1st July and shows that the war was also waged underground by Royal Engineers and the devastation this caused


Delville Wood was also an incredibly atmospheric place to visit. It was where battalions of the South African Brigade came under artillery fire from the Germans during their attempt to capture and then defend the wood in mid July 1916

The South African Brigade had gone into battle here on 15th July 1915 with strength of 121 officers and 3,032 other ranks. At roll call on 21st July they numbered only 29 officers and 751 other ranks.

Military Artist drawing of the battle of Delville Wood July 1917


Abandoned German trench Delville Wood September 1916


Deville Wood at it is today


Newfoundland Memorial Park near Beaumont Hamel is one of only a few sites on the Western Front where the ground remains largely untouched from when the First World War ended and there are preserved trenches:

Image of trenches from the November 1916 attack


The Royal Newfoundland Regiment, part of the 29th Division, which had seen action at Gallipoli (1915) arrived in France in April 1916 and attacked on the 1st July 1916 at 9.15am as part of the second wave and suffered great losses in their attempt to Beaumont Hamel with 90% casualties.


Just in front of the Caribou in the above photo are the trenches from which the Newfoundland’s launched their attack.

During the First World War plans were already being made on how to commemorate the fallen and I would recommend Empires of the Dead by David Crane (2013) if you are interested in the story behind the building of the British and Commonwealth war cemeteries.


The most poignant and the largest memorial and the focus of commemorations on the 1st July is the Thiepval Memorial to the missing. This commemorates the 72,195 dead of all the  battles fought in the Somme area July 1915-November 1918 who have no known grave.

Total allied casualties during those 141 days were 623,907.

Lest We Forget.

To access all the databases used to research this blog please see:

Punch Historical  Archive 1841-1992

Visit the Times Digital Archive

The Illustrated London News is available at the Central Reference Library

Karen Ullersperger, Tri-Borough Reference Librarian




Celebrating Charlotte Bronte

Charlotte Bronte was born on 21 April 1816. The eldest of the Bronte siblings to reach adulthood, she was the last to die. She wrote Jane Eyre, Shirley and Villette, and died on 31 March 1855, aged 38. Her bicentenary is celebrated this year, and those of Branwell Brontë in 2017,  Emily Brontë in 2018 and Anne Brontë in 2020.

This post is a quick reminder of some of the resources we have available in the library for Bronte students…look out for more Bronte posts in the future.


The library holds a wealth of Charlotte Bronte resources for everyone, from students to simply curious browsers: Charlotte Bronte’s entry in the DNB (Dictionary of National Biography) gives a concise but detailed account of the life of this shy, complex and talented writer, with links to additional resources.


The online Encyclopaedia Britannica’s topic pages  also gives extensive lists of useful sources of further reading.  Britannica Library for students gives an excellent and well-written article about the Bronte family’s difficult and intriguing life.

Don’t forget, with both these resources you are offered links to carefully chosen, credible sites on the internet, as well as primary sources, pictures, and library catalogue entries. You are also able to highlight particular words in the article for a more detailed explanation of their meaning if unsure.





And for further reading, the Times Digital Archive gives us a review of Elizabeth Gaskell’s Life of Charlotte Bronte, an insight into the thoughts and attitudes of her contemporaries.


The Great War and your ancestors

2014 marks 100 years since the outbreak of World War I. This centenary anniversary has made remembrance even more poignant.  The 11th November and Remembrance Sunday help mark the event which brought an end to this conflict.

There is more we can do to remember though; we can look at how the war affected the lives of our families back then, which is what I and several others did using our Ancestry Online database in Kensington Central Library on Thursday 6 November.

World War One records
World War One records

The pictures we built were often very interesting, viewing as well as military records, Census records, which allowed us small insights into their lives. But it was often also very sad – families left without sons (in one instance losing several within a very short space of time) and fathers listed and remembered on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission’s website. It made us think of how sad it must have been for them- and their friends as well.

Luckily these online resources make it easier to look back and see what our family did during the war (and before). Whether it is from the medals they won, who they served with, or information from the CWGC website, which lists 1,700,000 men and women of the Commonwealth forces who died in the two world wars.

Ancestry online  is available in and Kensington and Chelsea library plus in Westminster and Hammersmith and Fulham. As well as family history records for the British Isles there are other records from around the world at the time such as Canada, the USA, Germany, and France.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission
Commonwealth War Graves Commission

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission website can be accessed from anywhere and can provide a lot of information – more than you’d expect. And there are many instructional books available which can help you search through records and find out more about the Great War.

You may find newspaper resources interesting and useful in building a picture of the time and possibly a picture of your ancestors too. The Times Digital Archive is the most popular of these but there are other newspapers available in Westminster. The Gazette (official public record) also allows you to search for medals awarded.

Another online family history resource which is available in Westminster Libraries is Find My Past: this contains some different records to Ancestry.



60 years of the Route Master

Owen Grey, Reference Librarian, writes:

In Earls Court’s sixty years ago on the 24th of September the Routemaster bus was unveiled by London Transport.

A brief story in the Times, Biggest Commercial Motor Show by our motoring correspondent from Friday 24 September 1924 speaks about its benefits-  but even then could not foresee how it would become what Transport for London describes as being regarded by many as an icon of London. Or indeed just how long it would live on…

From http://www.standard.co.uk/news/transport/london-bids-farewell-to-the-historic-routemaster-9127455.html
From http://www.standard.co.uk/news/transport/london-bids-farewell-to-the-historic-routemaster-9127455.html


It is I am sure missed in a lot of ways by nostalgic Londoners (although I am glad I do not have to get my buggy onto it), but equally I am sure they would never be allowed these days with the dangers they pose: crazy children (and adults) leaping onto and off platforms to catch or leave the bus, who cares about whether you are at a stop or not! I managed to survive these crazy antics (I remember I preferred the Routemasters to the “new” buses as they were always quicker to where you wished to get to) and was very excited with the bringing in of the new(er) Routemaster, feeling the need to catch it for just two stops when I first saw one on our streets! They certainly will be more popular than the bendy buses with Londoners but will they be as popular as the old Routemasters? And will they survive just as long?

Well, have a look online and find out more…

TFL have a lot to say, telling us about the old and the new Routemaster buses… Or why not view the article an article from the time (in the Times) from the Times Digital Archive.

So when did they finally go onto the streets of London? The Illustrated London News suggests it was not until July 1961.  But an experimental model went all the way from Golders Green to Crystal Palace on route 2 in 1956.

Finally, a few videos to keep you reminiscing and amused…



Farewell Routemasters

The Times Digital Archive, Illustrated London News, and much more, are all available in the Reference Library- come in to find out more!

The lamps are going out all over Europe…

The Times, 5th August 1914
The Times, 5th August 1914

The Times newspaper of the 5th August 1914 gives a sense of the emotion that gripped the country after Britain declared war on Germany on the 4th August.

Crowds pack out Central London waiting for the announcement, and the atmosphere is electric: cheering, demonstrations, patriotic singing, and the royal family appears on the balcony of Buckingham Palace three times, in response to the hysterical crowds below.  Ties with Britain are strengthened across the world, with voices from America, France, and Canada confirming the sense of solidarity and unity:

“All reserve has now gone, and a wave of passionate loyalty is now sweeping the country”. (From The Times’ own correspondent, in Ottawa)

“Let us remember that the future of free government in the modern world is now being safeguarded by the blood and treasure of Great Britain as it was safeguarded by her in the era of Napoleon.” (From an American, escaped from Germany to London)

But side by side with excitement sit practicality and caution : messages to the public to reduce their food consumption, recruitment drives and the sad news that racing meets could be abandoned as the government has commissioned all horse boxes. Burberry makes the most of things:


Excitement seems to be the main ingredient, with little sense of the horrors to come…

The Times newspaper was vital for those at home following the progress of the war, in an age without internet or TV.  Key moments of WWI are brought to life through the words of Times journalists, correspondents and advertisements, and you can access the full archive online through our website, for free.

Ancestry online: finding ancestors who were involved in WWI

Our Reference Librarian, Owen Grey, writes:

Have you ever looked into how your family was involved in the Great War?

They may not have mentioned it to you, perhaps because it is too upsetting: the horror of the conflict is felt to this day with soldiers and artillery still being found, recently with tragic consequences; they feel you would not be interested (perhaps you never asked them); and in these more peaceful days they may not be proud that they were a member of the army. Whatever the reason,  it would be a fascinating and worthwhile project to find out more about the people involved, and perhaps who even gave their lives, during WWI – especially as we reach the 100th anniversary of its beginning.

Indeed, I myself found out from a comment from a relative that my Great Grandfather gave his life in 1917, and used Ancestry Online, and the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website, to find out more .

Ancestry, our online database of thousands of family history records, does not just provide birth and death details, it can also help us to find more information about our ancestors- or even find ancestors we never knew we had! Once we know a few simple details, we can then find their war records using AncestryAncestry doesn’t only have UK records, it also contains:

  • records from the US, the Commonwealth, France, Germany and other European countries who were also involved in the conflict.
  • Service records
  • Medals
  • War graves
  • Rolls of honour – those who died in the war
Ancestry online
Ancestry online

You can search specifically in a particular military record, in military records in general or perhaps just in amongst Ancestry’s vast number of records.

Once you have found items of interest you could perhaps ask family members more about what they know, and continue your detective work into your family history. Try looking in newspapers (using the Times Digital Archive) from WWI to see what was happening when your family members were involved in conflict. Your search could even uncover a grave or memorial. 

Drop into Kensington Central Reference Library to find out more about Ancestry and our other online databases. A member of our team will be happy to help you use them!

Kensington Central Library – July 2013

Kensington Central Library
Kensington Central Library

Hello from us all at Kensington Central Library! We’ve certainly been enjoying the better weather (& we hope you all have too) – so our blog post this month certainly has a summery feel – from Wimbledon to summer reading.

Well done Andy Murray!

Andy Murray with his Wimbledon trophy
Andy Murray with his Wimbledon trophy

Well that was certainly an exciting Sunday afternoon! I did at times think that Andy was keeping it going so that I could get home in time for match point. Sadly I wasn’t but I’m not sure my nerves could have coped with the tension anyway so probably not a bad thing! Indeed, he managed to finish him off relatively quickly in the end and I was able to have my celebratory ice cream and watch his Centre Court celebrations!

After a long wait there is certainly an element of relief as well as cheer in my heart at Murray’s victory; it was certainly a while since a British player won the Men’s singles Wimbledon – although I suppose he did win last year as well – does Olympic gold count?

We must all have had a feeling that this was coming after that gold medal, last year’s final, the doubles victories of Jonny Marray (last year) and Jamie Murray in 2007 and all those years of Tim Henman and Greg Rusedski so nearly getting to the final! You can read the stories about these victories and Andy Murray’s in the newspaper articles within UKNewsstand – a fully searchable database of UK national and local newspapers. 

Virginia Wade
Virginia Wade

So although we may’ve been provided some consolation by the doubles victories, it was really the singles where we wanted to be victorious; it was certainly a long time since anyone had been singles champion. Virginia Wade “fought for 16 years” to win her women’s singles title in 1977 and for a men’s winner you had to go even further back – to 1936 with Fred Perry winning his third title. Fred’s final was much easier than Andy’s as von Cramm injured himself in the first game of the match.

You can read about both of their victories and the reaction in the Times Digital Archive – this is an online, full-text facsimile of more than 200 years of The Times. Judging by the reaction to Fred’s win with his “murderous forehand” I don’t think they knew just how long we would have to wait until they could next celebrate such a victory at Wimbledon!

Fred Perry
Fred Perry

Fred was a very interesting chap as well. You only have to read his biography, did you know he had also been the world table tennis champion?! And it wasn’t just these competitions that he won – have a whiz through his fascinating life story in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography – this lists remarkable people in any walk of life who were connected with the British Isles, excluding living people.

Finally, as we look on into the future wondering whether Andy can compete with Fred’s records why not have a read of the Oxford University Press’ blog piece, ‘An Oxford Companion to Wimbledon’  (I especially like the ending) which perhaps expresses some of our pre-victory feelings.

Owen Grey

Triborough Reference Librarian

The heat is on – so cool down with a book!

Summer Reads on display
Summer Reads on display

The hot weather has inspired us to have a look at some books about cooling down, such as a great book about ‘Wild Swimming’ by Daniel Start.  And we have also been picking out some great stories to get stuck into on lazy summer days.  Take a look at our selection at the Kensington Central Library.

London 60s Week book display
London 60s Week book display

The 19 to 28 July is London 60s Week – an annual festival celebrating the golden anniversary of the 60s.  The festival celebrates the creative explosion from this period, and we have found lots of evidence of this creative talent in our books!

More information about this festival can be found on the London 60s Week website.

We’ve also got some summer reading displays in our children’s library – especially for this year’s Summer Reading Challenge! More information about the challenge and our special events during the school holidays can be found on our Summer Reading Challenge webpage.

Gillian Nunns, Reference Librarian
Gillian Nunns

Gillian Nunns

Lending Librarian

Hot Off the Press – from the Titanic to Picasso

This is the final blog post in a series of four from Nina Risoli, one of our Tri-Borough Reference Librarians about two of our online reference databases:

You can catch up with last three posts, an introduction to both databases, more about  UK Newsstand and the Times Digital Archive.

This week Nina demonstrates how two very different subjects – the Titanic and Pablo Picasso –  can be researched on the Times Digital Archive and UK Newsstand.

Sinking the Unsinkable

The Titanic

You can experience the drama of events such as the sinking of the Titanic, for example, and follow the awful event as it was reported as the news trickled in.

Boarding Pass for the Titanic
Boarding Pass for the Titanic

This is a string of some of the results you get when you search the database inserting a single search term: Titanic.

  • Launch Of The Titanic. Vessel Successfully Takes The Water. (News) from our special correspondent
    The Times Thursday, Jun 01, 1911
  • The Largest Vessel Afloat. Maiden Voyage Of The Titanic. (News)
    The Times Thursday, Apr 11, 1912
  • The Titanic Disaster. (Editorials/Leaders)
    The Times Tuesday, Apr 16, 1912
  • Titanic Sunk. Terrible Loss Of Life Feared., Collision With An Iceberg., Official Messages. (News) (FROM OUR CORRESPONDENT.).The Times Tuesday, Apr 16, 1912
  • Position Of The Titanic At The Time Of The Disaster. (Picture Gallery)
    The Times Tuesday, Apr 16, 1912
  • The Marine Insurance Market. The Disaster To The Titanic. (Shipping News)
    The Times Tuesday, Apr 16, 1912
  • The Titanic Disaster. A Death Roll Of 1,328., List Of Survivors., World-Wide Expressions Of Sympathy. (News)
    The Times Wednesday, Apr 17, 1912
  • New York Stock Exchange. Dull On The Loss Of The Titanic. (Stock Exchange Tables)
    The Times Wednesday, Apr 17, 1912
  • Help For Titanic Victims. A Mansion House Fund., Donations From The King And Queen. (Letters to the Editor) THOS. BOOR CROSBY, Lord Mayor
    The Times Thursday, Apr 18, 1912
  • The Titanic. Number Of Survivors Still Doubtful., The Supply Of Boats., Relief Fund Opened In London. (News) (FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT.)
    The Times Thursday, Apr 18, 1912
Dinner Menu on the Titanic
Dinner Menu on the Titanic

The string of newspapers headlines eloquently illustrates how the ‘unsinkable’ ship went from this:

Titanic at Night
Titanic at Night

To this in one short week:

Sunken Titanic
Sunken Titanic


Fall and Rise of Picasso

Pablo Picasso
Pablo Picasso

In another example, the first article published in The Times about the artist, Pablo Picasso is dated 12 April1912 following the exhibition of his drawings in Stafford Gallery in Duke Street in London. It defends the artist from the accusations of being the ‘incompetent charlatan’ and discusses how the advent of photography ‘spooked’ artists like Picasso into exploring the abstract and moving away from representing form in the conventional way.


Pablo Picasso
Pablo Picasso

268 further results reveal the bewilderment of the established critics at the developments of this new way of artistic expression. They chart the artist’s rise through countless exhibitions, record-breaking sales, stolen works, attempts at forgery of his paintings, right through to the platitudes piled on him on the occasion of his 75th birthday, on 25th October 1956, in the article which declares him ‘among the greatest draughtsman to have appeared in the history of European art.’

…and finally his death at 91 on Monday, 9th April 1973, with The Times depicting him as the ‘greatest painter of modern times’ and a national treasure of several countries. Henry Moore calls him ‘probably the most naturally gifted artist since Raphael’ and the director of Tate hails him as ‘beyond comparison and the most original genius of the century.’

 “When I was a child, my mother said to me, ‘If you become a soldier, you’ll be a general. If you become a monk you’ll end up as the Pope.’ Instead, I became a painter and wound up as Picasso.”

It is interesting to note how the emphasis of the whole body of writing on the subject of Picasso on the Times Digital Archive is overwhelmingly his art, despite the fact that he had a very colourful private life. Out of 268 articles only a handful refer to his private life, briefly and respectfully.

The true fall-out of his manner of life and the fact that he left no will to help the family manage his gigantic legacy can be much better traced using UK Newsstand, reflecting our modern obsession with salacious detail and Picasso himself. Search for “Picasso women” yields staggering 9222 articles in UK Newsstand.

All this is interesting on its own merit, but if you are a student or a researcher or have a special interest in anything that happened or was talked about in this country in the last 200 years – Times Digital Archive can enrich your understanding and widen you research through its particular take on people and events captured in news articles as they unfolded.

If you wish to have a demonstration of the Times Digital Archive or UK Newsstand please contact Kensington Central Reference Library on information@rbkc.gov.uk.  A reference librarian will be delighted to help you get familiar with the databases and set you off on your own journey of discovery. Kensington Central Reference Library has 5 dedicated computers available for researching our online databases.

Nina Risoli
Nina Risoli

Nina Risoli, Tri- Borough Reference Librarian

Kensington Central Reference Library

Hot Off the Press – Times Digital Archive

This is the third in a series of four blog posts from Nina Risoli, one of our Tri-Borough Reference Librarians about two of our online reference databases:

You can catch up with last two posts, an introduction to both databases and more about  UK Newsstand. This week Nina tells us about the Times Digital Archive.

Times Digital Archive (TDA) offers access to 200 years of The Times and The Sunday Times. Just think – you can read the news as it happened from 1785 onwards!

Cover page of the first issue of The Times, 1 January 1785
Cover page of the first issue of The Times, 1 January 1785

That is, from the time when life and some of the people in the news most probably looked like this.

Theatre goers: 'The laughing audience' Edward Matthew Ward, 1785
Theatre goers: ‘The laughing audience’ Edward Matthew Ward, 1785
Benjamin Franklin visiting London, 1785
Benjamin Franklin visiting London, 1785
Fanny Burney, British writer, ca. 1785
Fanny Burney, British writer, ca. 1785
Thomas De Quincey, author and essayist
Thomas De Quincey, author and essayist
…and the shoes they wore looked like this!
Court shoes, ca. 1785
Court shoes, ca. 1785

This is the Times’ very own editor, John Walter, from that first 1785 issue to 1803.

John Walter, Editor of The Times 1785-1803
John Walter, Editor of The Times 1785-1803

Have a look at his first ever editorial (seen on that first cover page, headed ‘To The Public’), introducing to the world  the publication that would over the next couple of centuries become one of the most read in this country and abroad, with its hand firmly on the pulse of European and World history in the making.

TIP: Have your library card number ready to access TDA. Once there, you can enlarge the text by dropping down the small menu on top of the citation which states “Article at 133%”

The beauty of the database is that it presents pages as they really appear, rather than displaying dry, document-style text characteristic of more modern newspaper databases. And yet, the entire text is keyword-searchable. Keywords are highlighted in pretty pink in the resulting articles, to help you assess the relevance of the ones you’ve retrieved.

You can see layouts and fonts used at the time, pictures, advertisements and captions, but with added extras. You can enlarge text to read it comfortably – even visually impaired people can enjoy browsing the database as any text can be amplified by up to 400%. You can also single out particular articles and view just those, rather than the whole page. You can print out anything of interest with easy pre-sets or e-mail citations with a couple of clicks.

More tips on how to navigate 200 years of British and world history:

For more specific searches you can define date ranges or use particular titles or names of authors if you have them. You can search by the newspapers section and choose articles from results divided into 7 categories: Advertising, Editorial/ Commentary, News, Business, Features, People or the Picture Gallery.

You can Browse List or Browse by Date, which allows you to view the entire newspaper, page for page, with the links to the individual articles conveniently displayed on the right. Try checking the paper from the date of your birth for example, and see how life was on the day you made your grand entrance.

By far the best tool at your disposal in TDA is the wonderful Keyword Search. You can use it to research any topic of interest from the whole 200 years of publication. You can get a comprehensive overview of any subject, person or event that was deemed newsworthy throughout the two centuries, up to 1985.

If you wish to have a demonstration of TDA or UK Newsstand please contact Kensington Central Reference Library by emailing information@rbkc.gov.uk, or call 0207 361 3031. A reference librarian will be delighted to help you get familiar with the databases and set you off on your own journey of discovery. Kensington Central Reference Library has 5 dedicated computers available for researching our online databases.

Nina Risoli
Nina Risoli

Nina Risoli, Tri- Borough Reference Librarian

Kensington Central Reference Library

Hot Off the Press – UK Newsstand

Latest News, newspaper caption
Latest News, newspaper caption

This is the second in a series of four blog posts from Nina Risoli, one of our Tri-Borough Reference Librarians about two of our online reference databases:

You can catch up with last Monday’s post, an introduction to both databases. This week Nina tells us about UK Newsstand.

UK Newsstand lets you access 299 regional and national newspapers and magazines (along with several trade and scholarly journals), from Aberdeen Evening Express to the Yorkshire Post. You can read broadsheets or tabloids, anything from small local newspapers such as Hackney Gazette to the big national newspapers such as The Guardian, The Times, The Independent and The Daily Telegraph, within 24 hours of them being pressed. You can also easily catch up with anything you might have missed.

Assorted newspapers
National newspapers
More assorted newspaper titles
Local newspapers

TIP: to gain access to the database you should always go through either the  Kensington and Chelsea’s reference page selecting the relevant database from the links on the right. Or on the Kensington and Chelsea Digital library newspaper page. Click on “View Title List” on the following page for information on publications included in the database, as well as the length of each archive.

Ed Stein cartoon 'Infrastructure' Photo: Ed STein '08 Rocky Mtn News NEA
Ed Stein cartoon ‘Infrastructure’ Photo: Ed Stein ’08 Rocky Mtn News NEA

At the moment the press itself is under scrutiny. Searching for terms such as ‘Levison’ or ‘press regulation’ using UK Newsstand is far superior than searching via a search engine. Search engines will throw up many relevant sites and articles but they will displayed haphazardly and you’ll need at least five more clicks to get to the information you want on each site (then go back and look for another source and so on). Using UK Newsstand gives you a comprehensive list of chronologically ordered results from all the selected publications. This allows you to have an extensive overview how a certain subject was reported in the press.

For serious researchers there is My Research – a place where you can save, manage, and organise the content and supporting materials you find using the database. You can include texts, articles, searches, tags, shared lists, search alerts, RSS feeds, and more.

TIP: Use quotation marks rather than brackets to obtain exact phrases.

TIP: UK Newsstand can be displayed in over 10 languages – the results will still be in English but it may be easier to navigate around the site in your own language!
UK Newsstand provides millions of documents from thousands of sources, covering research and subject areas like these:

  • The Arts 
  • Business
  • Health & Medicine
  • History
  • Literature & Language
  • Science & Technology
  • Social Sciences

The database offers the full range of searching options. You can use keyword search for the publications you select, you can choose the type of documents you want to view or search Obituaries and death notices to help find ancestors, relatives, and notable figures.

If you wish to have a demonstration of TDA or UK Newsstand please contact Kensington Central Reference Library on information@rbkc.gov.uk. A reference librarian will be delighted to help you get familiar with the databases and set you off on your own journey of discovery. Kensington Central Reference Library has 5 dedicated computers available for researching our online databases.

A young newspaper vendor at work in Fleet Street, 1894. Photo: Mary Evans Pictures Library/ Alamy
A young newspaper vendor at work in Fleet Street, 1894. Photo: Mary Evans Pictures Library/ Alamy

Nina Risoli, Tri- Borough Reference Librarian

Nina Risoli
Nina Risoli

Kensington Central Reference Library