Home News Linen Hall Library Belfast receives diversity and inclusion recognition

Linen Hall Library Belfast receives diversity and inclusion recognition


The Linen Hall Library has become the world’s first library/museum and tourist destination to be awarded the BS 76005 Diversity and Inclusion certificate.

Following a rigorous assessment process involving staff and volunteer interviews and an in-depth examination of current and historical Linen Hall policies and procedures, it was confirmed that the Library met all of the requirements.

The diversity and inclusion certificate is a British Standard for best practice, providing a framework for reviewing, assessing and undertaking a competent and principled approach to diversity and inclusion.

It encompasses people management and development, the evolution of more inclusive policies, procedures, practices and behaviours and the building of productive relationships with others, including customers, clients and people in the community.

The Linen Hall Library is, and always has been, a place of inclusivity and diversity. That was inherent in the formation of our organisation and underpins everything we do. It is one of the reasons we have maintained a prominent place in the cultural, social and intellectual fabric of Northern Ireland and beyond since 1788. We will display our Diversity and Inclusivity Certificate with pride.

Linen Hall Director Julie Andrews

The report noted that “the Linen Hall Library remains a unique institution and the values and traditions fully embrace inclusion and diversity. The Board and the senior team ensure that the traditions, ethos, and values inform major decisions regarding the library.

“Staff are well qualified, hugely committed to the work they do and have demonstrated flexibility and resilience throughout the pandemic. Staff have used the time for continuing professional development, upskilling and the development of new projects/programmes.

“The extent to which the library has embraced technology and has extended audience reach whilst attracting new audiences has provided a sound platform for implementing a new hybrid operating model.”

This is a superb achievement meeting the requirements of this national standard for Diversity and Inclusion, particularly at this time.  Valuing People through Diversity and Inclusion incorporates the perspective of those who work for the organisation and equally importantly, external stakeholders such as customers and the wider community. Through networking, collaboration and a partnership approach staff continue to foster effective relationships with a wide variety of stakeholders to ensure that the assets of Linen Hall are accessible to more groups and individuals, locally, nationally and internationally.

The Centre for Assessment Linen Hall assessor John Mulholland 

The Linen Hall Library is a truly unique institution. Founded in 1788, it is the oldest library in Belfast and the only remaining library in Ireland that still generates a proportion of its income from membership. The Library is free to enter and enjoy, and is housed in a stunning Victorian former linen warehouse in the picturesque Donegall Square, across from Belfast City Hall. It is renowned for its unparalleled Irish and Local Studies Collection, ranging from comprehensive holdings of Early Belfast and Ulster printed books to the 350,000 items in the Northern Ireland Political Collection, the definitive archive of the recent ‘Troubles’. For more information: www.linenhall.com