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Welcome to the Library


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Welcome to the Library


RESTAURANT - grill - bar - lounge - venue 


Formerly the UK's first public subscription library, this wonderful listed building is now home to the Library Restaurant. 

Boasting a plethora of fantastic food, cocktails and wine, the Library is Co-Directors Nigel  & Jayne Raffles' biggest project to date. 

This stunning building is rich with historic features and boasts a large lounge, bar and brasserie. There is also an outside courtyard, perfect for alfresco dining, where food is cooked on a specially imported, wood fired grill. 

Take your time to explore our website and get to know the Library a little bit better, however to really experience what it has to offer you should visit us in the flesh. 


Upcoming Events


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A Brief History


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A Brief History


Lovingly restored and re-opened as a restaurant by Jayne and Nigel Raffles in October 2006, this stunning building has a long and varied history.

The Norfolk and Norwich Subscription Library was formed in 1886. The original subscription rate was £1.00 for ladies over 18 and £2.00 for men. Fueled by voluntary subscriptions, the building possessed many volumes of great value.

In 1898, during the August Bank Holiday weekend, a fire broke out in nearby Dove Street. The fire quickly spread to the Library and within an hour the entire building was gutted and most of its contents were destroyed. The building was later restored at the cost of £1,719 and re-opened in 1914.

This beautiful venue now hosts a multitude of events including weddings, corporate events, special birthdays and even special wine tastings. We also have many regular diners who join us for fine, fresh food, cooked on our unique Aztec wood grill. 

Our philosophy is fresh, simple food, cooked on site using local produce and suppliers.

We are certain that a visit to the Library will be one you will enjoy. Whether you tour our very own mezzanine art gallery that overlooks the restaurant  or simply relax in our comfortable and contemporary lounge, you will find the escape you need to unwind. 

We hope you enjoy your meal with us at the Library and welcome any comments or feedback you may have. 

 

With Love,


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Testimonials


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Testimonials


It’s my new favourite venue for a client coffee meeting or equally for dinner with friends
— Miss Sue Flay

Here is the link to Miss Sue Flay's blog article

We recently featured in famous fashion publication Red magazine as part of their ‘While you’re in Norwich…’ feature.

The Library Restaurant has also received a favourable write-up within the exclusive  Uniquely Away magazine reviewing our recent re-launch party to celebrate the arrival of our new lounge bar and tapas menu.

We have also featured on the Culture Trip website, within the ‘Eating out in Norwich’ feature, a website promoting the best art, culture and travel for every country in the world.

Days out with kids included us in their Fantastic Days out with Kids blog article which listed the nation's best places to visit with kids. We ranked alongside some fantastic London Restaurants in a post that was published to over half a million followers

Days Out with Kids - Fantastic Family Restaurants Blog Post




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Our Partners


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Our Partners


At the Library Restaurant Bar & Grill, we believe in sourcing local, sustainable and seasonal produce from like-minded local businesses and suppliers. Here are just a few of our suppliers who share our passion for quality and contribute to your dining experience.

Havensfield Eggs

Havensfield Eggs have a commitment to producing quality, free-range eggs and follow the philosophy that they are ‘big enough to compete but small enough to care.’ Havensfield Eggs supply fresh, free-range hen, duck and quail eggs to a wide range of outlets, from independent farm shops to large commercial caterers

P.J. Roofe & Son

Specialist butchers P.J. Roofe Catering Butchers of Norwich have supplied quality, locally-sourced meat and poultry to the hospitality and catering industry for over 30 years. The business has has grown steadily with the success of their customers, whilst maintaining 'traditional' values one would expect.

Ronaldo's Ices

Ronaldo’s Ices use good quality local ingredients where possible. "We do not use flavourings or colours and believe strawberry Ice Cream should be made from strawberries and not topped up with manufactured flavourings. Our products are not very high in fat and do not contain eggs. Most of our fruit ices are more than 25% fruit and our Blackberry & Bramley sorbet is 75% fruit". 

Sam Cole Fish Merchants

In April 2007, after 20 years of friendly rivalry, Sam Cole Fish Merchants and JT Cole, run by Donny and Michael Cole, merged to become one of the largest fish merchants in the country. The Cole name has been linked to Lowestoft’s fishing industry since 1935 when Jim Cole set up JT Cole. 

Peter Easter 

Peter Easters fresh fruit and vegetables A traditional, family run wholesaler based in Norwich City Centre supplying fresh fruit and vegetables, as well as salad, herbs, dairy, pulses and nuts. Locally grown produce is a specialty. 

The Cheese Truckle 

The Cheese Truckle delivers quality cheeses and specialty food products to leading Hotels, Restaurants, Inns, Shops, Caterers, and Wholesalers throughout Norfolk. "We pride ourselves on supplying quality products and are Distributors for The Fresh Olive Company and Sapori D'Italia offering a vast range of Olives, Oils and Mediterranean specialties. Our range of Local cheeses include, Norfolk White Lady, Binham Blue, Norfolk Dapple and Jacmar all straight from the Cheese makers. We also offer a full range of British, Irish and European cheese."