Our Library


The BMI Collections includes hardback, paperback, DVDs, and talking book cassettes across a number of genres including latest releases and old favourites in crime fiction, mystery and suspense, Scandinavian thrillers, great Australian writers, and a great range of non-fiction titles. Plus, there are complete sets of ‘same character’ series – numbered in sequence on the spine.

Despite the library operating in a heritage space, everything that could be expected in a modern library can be found at the BMI, such as free internet access, photocopying, local daily newspapers and a reading area with comfortable armchairs.

Find a book

Explore our fiction and non fiction catalogue. 

New Releases
New books are added to the collection for borrowing each month, which will be in our monthly newsletter.
Heritage Book Collection
Rosemary’s Recommendations
Find out more about this month’s New Releases and Recommendations.
Books for Sale

Now and again the collection is reviewed and some surplus, duplicate or non-current titles are made available for sale in the library.  

Members also donate books to the library giving us the opportunity to replace and rejuvenate existing contemporary stock or even our Heritage Collection. 

Keep an eye on our Newsletter and Events Page for Book Sale dates.

Author talks

We regularly host author talks in the Library,  these events are open to all and we would love to see you there, keep an eye on our events page.

Book Clubs – the reading room
The Reading Room is a member run book reading and discussion group that meets monthly,  all are welcome to join but you must be or become a member. The sessions are free and when possible will be held in our Heritage Reading Room. To register your interest go to our Events Page for The Reading Room listing.
other Book Clubs 

We also run other Book Clubs, if you would like information on these sessions please contact the Librarian:

Library subscription

Why not become a member of the BMI community, you will not only have access to our contemporary library but to our historical collection and discounts on selected BMI events.


We happily take delivery of pre-loved books that are in good condition (during regular library operating hours) to supplement our library or include in our fundraising book sales.

To enquire please contact the Librarian.

Rosemary’s  new releases & recommendations


The Caretaker | Gabriel Bergmoser

Self Selection Loan Books

Our Library members are welcome to make an on-line selection of books for collection. Please select the category you have an interest in below, note the book title and ID number on the Reserve Form and Rosemary will do the rest.

  • All fiction titles are sorted by author.
  • Non-Fiction books are listed twice, once by date, so you can find the latest titles, and they are also listed by common subject titles and authors and Authors.

Click & Collect

For Click & Collect services follow the same principle as ‘self selection’ and wait for Rosemary’s instruction. We will operate this service during the pandemic when permitted. If in doubt submit a reserve request and we will advise you.

Fiction & Non Fiction Catelogue

Below are our catelogue listings. If you click on the listing and click on the Reserve button each will open in a new window. You can add all of your preferred titles to the same Reserve form, then submit.

Australian Fiction

Updated April 23

Historical Fiction

Updated April 23


Updated April 23


Updated April 23


Updated April 23


Updated April 23


Updated April 23


Updated April 23

Heritage Book Collection

Whilst it is not possible to borrow our Heritage Collection of books, members are able to able to do so in the Heritage Reading Room (fragile items may need to be viewed under the guidance of the Heritage Collection Team).

This database is being added to from our previous database from time to time.

Heritage Collection - Voyages

Heritage Collection - Theatre

Library events

Library news

Batten Lending Library

Visit our database for more information and resource material and to view the book listings of our heritage collection of books, newspapers and artefacts.

Who was Mr Batten

The lending library plays a major role in the life of the institute and services over 600 members. For most of its years it has been known as the “Reading Room” but was renamed the “Batten Room” in 2000. This was to recognise the first of two paid BMI secretaries and head Librarians: WH Batten and his son HC Batten. Between them they served in these positions for 92 years: remarkable terms of office.

William served from 1859 – 1910 and Harry from 1910 – 1951. William had two wives (the first died) and 19 children.

The lending library is part of the original 1860 building that comprised the reading room, library, office and two classrooms on the ground floor. A large hall, capable of accommodating 1200 people occupied the upper floor. The building cost around £3400.

Learn more about the history of the BMI. Book a tour.


The BMI can provide public tours of the building. Get in touch with us to book in a tour for your group.

Views: 584