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Making the most of Library Services at Kew

Craig Brough
18 February 2010
Read about the Library's Information Services Team and find out how they can help with your questions and curiosities about the world's plant life, plant artefacts and other plant uses such as medicine.



Hello! This is Craig Brough, Information Services Librarian, with my colleagues Marie Humphries, Lizbeth Gale and Tracy Wells. We are a small team within Kew's Library, Art & Archives. The kind of things that we deal with include:

  • requests to use library material and providing responses to general enquiries,
  • supplying library material for visitors to enjoy and producing copies of this in both paper and digital form,
  • providing guidance to visitors on how to use the Library Catalogue, on what we have in our collections, and also on what is available in other libraries and on the web.

Many people see Kew as being synonymous with horticulture, but it is actually the case that our library collections are richer in material on wild plants in their natural habitats and the explorers who brought them to Europe. We also hold materials related to ethnobotany (the cultural and economic value of plants) and the genetic makeup of plants.

So, if you are visiting another part of the world and are interested in its flora, we may be able to give you an idea of what you might find there. Or, if you discover an interesting object made from plant fibre or wood and wish to know more, we may have this documented. If you are interested in how plants have been used in medicine, we can help here too.

To get in touch, please email: or telephone +44 20 8332 5414.

- Craig -


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20 February 2010
Kew Gardens and its library is perhaps the most 'National Treasure' that we have. Treasure it - and the people who work in it and love it.
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