Home News National Library of Ireland unveils Lego model of its building

National Library of Ireland unveils Lego model of its building

National Library of Ireland unveils Lego model of its building

The National Library of Ireland (NLI) has unveiled a large-scale Lego model of its building on Kildare Street.

The model was commissioned alongside the ongoing redevelopment of the main NLI building. It shows the current building and imagines how it will look when complete.


The first phase of the redevelopment programme ran from 2017 to 2019, moving 350,000 books, newspapers and periodicals from the Victorian ‘West Wing’ to newly-developed book storage.

The next phase will redevelop the West Wing as six stories of exhibition and public engagement space with universal access for all, as well as a new shop and café.

David and Breda Fennell

Over the last four years, Lego hobbyists David and Breda Fennell worked closely with NLI staff to create the design. The model is one of the largest of its kind in Ireland: it measures 180cm x 168cm and stands at 60cm high.

Reimagining the National Library

“As we move through our redevelopment programme, this hugely impressive model offers the public the opportunity to reimagine the National Library of Ireland with us.

“This next phase of our capital redevelopment programme, a partnership with the OPW and the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport & Media, will result in the complete renovation of our former book store into an exciting cultural experience – creating a major new public space for a new generation of visitors,” said the NLI’s Acting Director, Katherine McSharry. 


“The Lego model highlights both the opportunities offered by our redevelopment, and celebrated the much-loved features of our Victorian buildings.

David and Breda have recreated the library’s iconic Reading Room with a skill and attention to detail that will charm and delight all our visitors.”

The Lego model will remain in place in the main entrance hall of the NLI throughout 2022.