Skip to main content

Drama and Theatre Arts: Specialist Subject Resources

Subject support from Library Services for staff and students in Drama and Theatre Arts

Cadbury Research Library

Manuscript from the Mingana Collection, Cadbury Research Library

The Cadbury Research Library, in the Muirhead Tower, is the home for  Special Collections and Archives of the University of Birmingham. The collections comprise approximately 200,000 pre-1850 books dating from 1471 and some 4 million manuscripts. The Cadbury Research Library welcomes all interested users, both staff and students of the University and members of the public.

Opening hours

  • Monday - 10am – 5pm
  • Tuesday - 9am – 5pm
  • Wednesday - 9am – 5pm
  • Thursday - 9am – 7pm
  • Friday - 9am – 5pm

Please note: requests for material must be placed by 4.15pm, or 4.30pm on Thursdays. If you are visiting on our late Thursday opening but are arriving after 4.30pm, you will need to pre order the material you wish to consult.

Closed days

The Cadbury Research Library is closed on all University closed days.

Drama Online

Specialist Libraries at the University of Birmingham

Special Collections in Drama and Theatre Arts at the University of Birmingham

Cadbury Research Library Special Collections holds a number of important archive collections including a Theatre Collection of some 5,000 printed articles, cuttings, playbills and photographs relating to theatre performances in London and the provinces during the 20th century. They also have the personal papers of playwrights and actors such as Noel Coward, Beatrice Campbell (Mrs. Patrick Campbell) and Norman Painting

For a list of full related archives collection available for research, see our Drama and Theatre Subject Resource Guide. Please contact the Cadbury Research Library for further information. 

Theatre collections at other libraries

University of Bristol Theatre collection
The University of Bristol Theatre collection, based in the Department of Drama, has a
library of theatre related books, periodicals and original archival material, including the Women's Theatre Collection.

East London Theatre Archive

Hull History Centre
The home for Hull City Archives, Hull Local Studies Library and Hull University Archives holds archive material on Alan Plater; John Godber; Out-Of-Joint Theatre Company; Approximately 6,000 playbills from 1760s to 1970s; and Hull Theatre Programmes

Scottish Theatre Archive
Located within the Special Collections Department of Glasgow University Library, the  archive includes programmes, scripts, production notes, photographs, posters, and press cuttings.

University of Warwick Centre for the Study of the Renaissance
Teaching and learning tool for contextualising the period and for engaging with the playtexts. Resources on Thomas Kyd, Christopher Marlowe, Ben Jonson, John Webster and Thomas Middleton.

Specialist Libraries

19th century journals in the Barber Fine Art Library

  • You can use the COPAC catalogue to search the collections of approximately 90 major UK and Irish libraries in a single search. Library collections listed include Oxford and Cambridge Universities, the British Library and libraries at the National Trust and Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew.
  • If you wish to visit another UK university library, you might be eligible for a SCONUL card. This will allow you reference access to a large number of academic libraries around the UK. For more information on using other libraries please look at Access Schemes

Finding Books

Findit@Bham is the place to start looking for printed books and ebooks.  For tips on how to make the most of searching Findit see the help page.  If the University doesn't have the book you want try COPAC