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History of the BSMGP Library

The British Society of Master Glass Painters' first librarian, Hew Lewis Pawle, established a small nucleus of books on stained glass which were housed at A. K. Nicholson Stained Glass Studios, and the first Library List of seventeen titles was published in 1954. At Mr Pawle's death in 1961 the Library was moved to the premises of James Hetley & Co. under the aegis of Hugh Salmond, who became Hon. Librarian, and by 1964 the BSMGP Library had grown to over a hundred titles, mainly through donations.

After a spell at the Glaziers' Hall under the Company's Hon. Librarian, Robert Lane, the Library was moved yet again in 1985, this time to the National Monuments Record in Savile Row under the Society's Hon. Librarian Margaret Bell. At this time Mrs Bell made a thorough review of the Library holdings and, up to her retirement from office in 1997, greatly augmented the collection through purchases and by encouraging donations of books.

When the National Monuments Record moved its London search room to 55 Blandford Street, the Society's books at Savile Row went with it and, on closure of the search room there, the Society of Antiquaries of London kindly agreed to house the collection at their premises in Burlington House, Piccadilly where it complements the Antiquaries’ own collection of books on stained glass.


st mark reading 

Saint Mark reading. Netherlandish/German, 1520/30. Courtesy of Sir John Soane’s Museum



Library overview


Location and access



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