Treasures of the British Library

Two six-part series and counting… This returning series for SKY ARTS gives household names an access-all-areas pass to the world-renowned British Library, inviting them to rummage deep inside its archives and look more closely at various cultural artefacts that speak to them.

From Beethoven's notebook and King Charles I's private letters, to Jane Austen’s writing desk and hand scribbled Beatles lyrics, the British Library is the custodian of an extraordinary collection of more than 150 million individual items. This archive is one of the largest in the world, and contains objects that connect to us all, on a personal and national level.

Celebrities featured include: Professor and presenter, Lord Robert Winston; children’s author, Julia Donaldson; actress and writer, Meera Syal; Jazz singer-songwriter, Jamie Cullum; poet, Benjamin Zephaniah; musician, Alison Balsom; author, Hanif Kureishi; actor, Jim Carter; presenter, Fiona Bruce; actor, Andrew Scott; violinist, Nicola Benedetti.

Colin Irwin