Cork City Council A Cork City Council Initiative
Cork City Council A Cork City Council Initiative

Cork City Library

Cork City Library

AddressGrand Parade
Opening HoursOpen 10am to 5.30pm
AccessabilityPartial wheelchair access

Cork was the first Irish City to adopt the Public Libraries (Ireland) Act of 1855, but waited until December 1892 to open a library service, in what is now the Crawford Municipal Gallery.

In 1905, a purpose-built library was opened on Anglesea Street next to City Hall, with a grant from Scottish-born Andrew Carnegie. This elegant building lasted for only 15 years, until 1920, as it and its contents were destroyed by a fire, started by Crown Forces retaliating against the IRA. The burning of the Carnegie Library left the city without a public library service until 1924, when premises were provided on a temporary basis for a library in Tuckey Street. That service was transferred in 1930 to new premises behind a new Hiberno-Romanesque facade at nos. 57-8 Grand Parade.

The creation of the network of local libraries is perhaps the most important development in the history of the service. The first branch on St Mary’s Road near the North Cathedral opened in 1972. With the boundary revision of Cork City in May 2019 there are now ten libraries serving communities throughout the city.


Cork’s Boxing Story • The Basque Children of ’37

Ireland 1919: Dreaming of Change • A Journey called Home

12pm     The life and death of Terence MacSwiney a talk by military historian Gerry White.

Booking essential on


2.30pm Many Tongues of Cork pop up reading session celebrating diversity of cultures in Cork City.

4pm       The Jolly Roger; Pirate radio days in Cork with sports broadcaster Trevor Welch who began his career with Radio Caroline and South Coast Radio in the mid 80’s.