The Library is situated on the first floor of the Pall Mall clubhouse. It is one of the leading motoring libraries in the country. Club members (only) can work in a peaceful atmosphere, undertake research and catch up with newspapers and periodicals.
There is an extensive in-house motoring catalogue detailing the Club's holdings in motoring and motor sport. Other sections include general reference, the arts, biography, business, history, classic and contemporary literature - many of the items can be borrowed.
Members can also bring in their own laptop, or use one of the Club's laptops or desktops. The Club Librarian is available to help members with any enquiry, motoring or non-motoring.
Club Librarian: Trevor Dunmore
Telephone: 020 7747 3398
To view the Library Plan please log in as a member. The Library Plan can only be viewed by members and once logged in will be shown in the right hand column of this page.
Open: 24/7 (locked at midnight but the Night Porter can open on request)
Manned: Monday to Friday 9:00am - 5:00pm
Telephone: 020 7747 3398
Jacket and tie (except weekends); jacket may be removed once inside the Library.
The Library is staffed Monday to Friday, 9.00am to 5.00pm, to answer members’ enquiries on any subject of interest. It is open all the time for research, personal correspondence and to simply catch up with the latest news and views from a wide range of journals and newspapers.
The Library and Archives together hold an invaluable collection of memorabilia relating to the history of the Club and its links to motoring and motor sport.
The Library is well stocked with books on motoring and motor sport which along with a large collection of standard reference materials, including annuals and directories, are all available for consultation within the Library. A range of books in the fields of biography, history and classic literature is available for members to borrow.
The Library subscribes to a large number of periodicals, both motoring and non-motoring. On the motoring side, current issues are on open display while back issues are bound. On the non-motoring side, current issues are also on open display with back issues of some titles stored for varying lengths of time.
Taken daily are all the UK broadsheets, a selection of UK tabloids along with several copies of the Evening Standard. The Wall Street Journal Europe, International Herald Tribune and Le Monde are also available. Back copies of the UK broadsheets are filed and kept for a period of at least one month.
The Library has an extensive in-house database started in 1989 that enables staff to locate items of motoring interest for members and researchers; please ask the library staff about this service. Additionally, it has two desktops that are permanently available for members’ use and two laptops available during staffed hours.
A photocopying service is available. Current copyright regulations are applied.
Any book from the biography, history, classic literature and contemporary fiction sections can be borrowed by a member, who may have up to six books on loan at any one time. Members are requested to adhere to the following guidelines:
1. Only members are entitled to borrow books.
2. Members are asked to record borrowed items in the red signing-out book, located on the reading desk near the main door of the Library.
3. Prompt return of books is appreciated, and certainly requested after a period of six weeks (or in the case of new books two weeks) has elapsed from the date of borrowing.
4. Books should be returned to the Library staff, and not directly to the Library shelves. There is no charge for borrowing books, but if a book is damaged or lost by a member, then he or she will be charged the full cost of repair/replacement.
The Club has two Book Clubs, one at each clubhouse. Take the opportunity to read books you've never considered before and make reading a social as well as a solitary pleasure. Titles include a range of subjects and styles.
The Pall Mall Book Club meets on the first Monday of every month (except July and August) in the Library. You do not need to book for the Pall Mall Book Club.
Price: £7.00 (including refreshments)
To suggest a book email The Book Worm or telephone 020 7747 3398.
The Woodcote Park Book Club meets at 5 week intervals, at 10.30am. You can find dates for the forthcoming meetings and the books to be discussed on the calendar.
Price: £5.00 (including refreshments)
To book a place email Judy Nash or telephone 020 8643 1503.
The Librarian regularly review the newest motoring and non-motoring books for Pell-Mell & Woodcote. If you have a book to recommend please email Library.
MY THOUSAND AND ONE CARS BY GABRIEL VOISIN. FAUSTROLL 2012
The first English edition of Voisin’s autobiography (part II) covers the post-Great World War period when his pre-occupation with automobiles really blossomed – but only after establishing the world’s first aeroplane manufacturing company. Dictated without editorship in his eighties, the translator works overtime – the footnotes work remarkably well – in contextualising the exuberant reminiscences of a truly active life: manifestly varied design work interspersed with much high society play. Foremost an ‘ideas man’, his list of registered patents is truly astonishing; money remained a by-product of his endeavours, never an end. Trenchant views pepper the text, backed by beautiful sepia illustrations. As an exemplar of French engineering excellence, both on the ground and in the air, his favourite sartorial garb would consist of the working man’s blue overalls. No idle hands his … c’était la vie.
STEVE HOLE A-Z OF KIT CARS: THE DEFINITIVE ENCYLOPAEDIA OF THE UK’S KIT-CAR INDUSTRY SINCE 1949
Getting out your spanners and tinkering with body and engine has been a major preoccupation of the British mechanic since the dawn of motoring. Austin, Bentley and Lotus have all suffered the ‘ignominy’ of kit-car overhaul but perhaps the dowdy reputation of this cottage industry is rather misplaced. Steve Hole, a life-long devotee, sets out to amend this calumny and goes some way to doing so. Since Derek Buckler, the modern industry’s ‘godfather’, started replicating his clubman racers in 1949, ‘funny little plastic cars’ have transmogrified into classic examples of excellence such as Caterham and Westfield. Glossily produced with comprehensive listings of marque, model and maker of all known ‘specials’ and ‘replicas’, preceded with a short, succinct narrative of kit-car evolution, and written with humour and self-effacement, his argument strikes a chord.
MY RACING LIFE BY DEREK BELL AND ALAN HENRY
The second edition to document this remarkably versatile and successful racer’s career comes almost 25 years after the first (1988) - a picture of which endearingly featured in the introduction - and celebrates Bell’s 70th birthday to boot. His racing record spans over 40 years and starts in the mid - 1960s with the three major formulae: some notable F2/F3 triumphs, as well as travails with Ferrari in a Formula 1 ‘periodic downturn’. His great successes of course came in the 1970s and 1980s. He was World Sports Car Champion twice and won Le Mans 24 Hours on five occasions and Daytona 24 Hours on three, driving some incredible Porsche models in the process. There’s a lot of racing still left in this man. He was competing with son Justin at D24H as late as 2003. With a particularly fascinating chapter on the physicality of ‘endurance racing technique’, it’s a great read, co-authored again with the highly respected Henry. This edition has much glossier production values, almost all the images being in colour with many from DB’s personal archive.
JAGUAR XK140 EXPLORED. BERNARD VIART; ROGER PAYNE
The publisher describes this book, not unjustifiably, as: ‘a new concept in motoring books’. Why is it so special? Well, the whole concept is wonderfully bonkers! Those of us more attuned to ploughing the furrow of generalities are constantly amazed at the dedication of the practitioners of specalisms. And what finer example of the latter can there be than Viart’s painstaking study in graphite of this iconic mid-1950s coupe. To produce such a work of art required many ‘Jaguar friends’, including world-renowned XK140 expert Roger Payne, followed by the dismantling and photographing of all those friends’ cars. Preparation completed, professional art teacher Viart was then at last in a postion to draw the plates, taking a whopping 7500 man-hours to do so. Was it worth it? Well, it’s a great model to have chosen. Apart from its resplendent lines (developed from the even purer XK120), the XK140 is powered by one of the great designs in automobile history: the XK engine – which was incorporated into all Jaguar models for more than three decades. Come, see, believe.