Goodbye Adelphi, Hello Clifford

By Apr.18, 2016

As the School of Arts & Media looks forward to moving some of its programmes from the Adelphi campus into a beautiful new building at the heart of the University’s Peel Park campus, here in the Library at Adelphi we are planning our own move.


We’ll be packing up our books, journals, DVDs, CDs, music scores and all the other content that makes up our physical collections, and moving to the Clifford Whitworth building. As you can imagine, it’s a mammoth task, involving much planning and measuring as we check that everything will fit.
We’ve reviewed all our printed books and journals to make sure we take everything that’s needed by our Arts & Media students. We will be transferring some of our older, less used items to store, to be collected on request, but ensuring that all those items we know our students will want are available in the new re-developed Clifford Whitworth.

Adelphi Building, circa 1960s

Image taken form The Library Archive, showing Adelphi Building in the 1960s.

Of course there are some regrets about the move. The University Library has occupied this space in the Adelphi building (originally an old soap factory) for a very long time, so for many Library staff and academics, it holds fond memories and associations.

That said, there are lots of things we won’t be sad to lose, such as the teaching room, not so affectionately known as the “Goldfish bowl”, and the hugely convoluted instructions needed to direct anyone trying to find the Library. One regular user told me you had to be “an Adelphi native” to find the Library here.

When I asked my colleagues Helen and Jenni what they thought about the move, they told me how much they will miss the feeling of being part of a small student community. They both enjoy hearing the faint (or not so faint) sound of our music students practicing in nearby rooms. However, they won’t miss the inconvenience of travelling between Library sites, which can take considerable amounts of time, and commented on how much easier it will be to be able to help students find what they need when they have access to a much wider collection in the same building.

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The Library at Adelphi

When I asked some of our students the same question, Hui, a second year library user, said she would be sad to lose the “local” feel of the current Library, but she was looking forward to being on the main campus with its busy vibe, and being able to make use of the Clifford Whitworth Library’s smart new spaces, and facilities. Jonathan, a second year Theatre and Performance student, told me that the most important thing to him when we move, was that he still had really easy access to all the resources he used regularly.

We’ve tried to keep these positive outcomes at the forefront of all our planning. After the move, our students in the New Adelphi building will continue to have access to the huge array of online materials the Library provides them, but they’ll be just a hop and a skip away from the Library’s physical materials and new facilities in the re-developed Clifford Whitworth building. They’ll be able to use the learning spaces and familiar resources in the same way as before, but they’ll also have better access to the University’s wider Library collections and benefit from 24 hour access as well.

This blog post was written by:

Joanna Wilson
Academic Support Librarian (Arts & Media)


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