The Sumac Centre has its own small library, which people are free to borrow from when the Centre is open.

The books, both fiction and non-fiction, cover a range of topics from anarchism, animal rights, political and social theory, race, gender and class, environment and ecology, activism, to journalism and history. and more. We ask that people write their name and contact details as well as the item they’ve borrowed and the date they borrowed it down in a small book located in the library if they want to take something out.

We also welcome offers of help in helping to keep the Library (& book stall) organised.

Sumac also hosts the Veggies Book Stall, open and available whenever the Centre is open as well as at Veggies Events. The store includes books and journals for sale covering green, human rights, animal issues, anti-war, co-operation and social justice.

More information on the Sumac Library, including it’s Rainbow Centre pre-history, may be seen here.

Desperately seeking Activist Archivists & Libertarian Librarians

From 1985 Nottingham’s Rainbow Centre curated a huge & diverse campaign library, covering many social, environmental, human rights, peace studies & animal rights issues of the time.

Following the 2002 move to the Sumac Centre this snapshot of a network of networks has been relocated around cellars & outbuildings five times, as Sumac lacks the space to display the 150 boxes & files. (The Rainbow Centre was housed in a 7-unit, 3 story terrace of rundown shops, with several room dedicated to the resource centre – Sumac has just one space to house library, book stall, cafe, bar, meeting space & gig venue).

The archive is currently being moved for ONE LAST TIME.

Time is not even available to simply list the hundreds of campaigns & thousands of topics from this last pre-digital era, let alone to sort though & to find appropriate homes. but it is surely too important a resource to trash.

Hence this call for activist archivists & libertarian librarians to step forward to help us out.

Much of the content should form part of the Resistance Exhibition archive and sessions at Sumac in Nottingham could run in parallel with their Savers of the Lost Archive! sessions in London.

Follow this story & comment on this at

&/or contact us if you would like to help.

More pictures at

A library overview from 2002!

Our library offers a rich source of information covering a wide variety of subjects, e.g:

  • Social Justice and Co-operative working
  • Environmental protection and campaigning
  • Human and Animal Rights
  • World Issues
  • Peace Issues
  • and more…

Pending the redevelopment of additional workshop space, the library facilities are currently quite restricted, with many materials in storage. If you are interested in helping with developing the resource, please get in touch

Whether you are involved in campaigning, project work, finding out facts and figures or simply curious, we stock information in many forms, from in-depth analysis to children’s books and videos:

  • Books — covering a wide variety of subjects are available to read in the Centre, and may often be bought for the cost of replacement.
  • DVDs/Videos — we have an extensive collection of documentaries, feature-films, cartoons etc. They are available for groups to borrow for their own events or for personal interest.
  • Leaflets — we hold a large stock of information & campaign leaflets – ideal for giving to people who want easily accessible information to take away.
  • Journals — we receive a large number of publications. About 160 of them are listed here together with links to their sites. Past issues are archived, going way back to the 1980s.
  • Press Cuttings — To keep up to date with the world around us we used to monitor the press and extract relevant items. We now provide internet access for this kind of research, through resources such as Indymedia and SchNEWS, and host presentations by visiting activists from overseas.
  • Your contributions are welcomed — You may have books which you could loan or donate to the Library. You could support your favourite organisation or journal by funding a subscription on our behalf. You could keep a spare disk handy by your dvd player to record programs relevant to our work. For a wish-list of resources that we would like to make available through the library see Reading and Research list from the Urban 75 Website.

In addition, the Centre compiles exhibition materials available for loan to anyone with a suitable venue, and for display at green gathethings during the summer season . We also assist people who wish to compile their own.

We may also be able to provide speakers on a wide range of topics for schools, youth clubs etc. If our volunteers cannot cover the subject, we can probably put you in touch with someone who can.

It’s not just information that’s available at the centre though; we also provide various other resources to help you put the information to work.

The Sumac Centre is very much a hand-on, ‘do-it-yourself’ facilty. All these facilities are subject to the availability of volunteers, on whom we depend to keep thing organised — so get involved.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email