My Favourite Free Work and Study Places in London – 2022 Update

I lived in London for a year and spent the majority of my time working remotely. I often felt overwhelmed at home or unmotivated and hence went out to work a lot. In the beginning, I went to coffee shops but that habit quickly got expensive. So, I searched the Internet for the best free study spots in London and tried them all. Some, I couldn’t even find. Others, like the Barbican Centre, I was just not impressed with – it was difficult to find a space and quite noisy.

Overall, I found a few that I returned to frequently. All of them had good WiFi access, great facilities and were pleasant to work in. If you’re looking for tried and tested places to get your work or studying done, look no further:

Your Local Library

This may seem obvious, but every single area of London has their own local library. It is free to sign up for local residents, they usually have great WiFi, lots of seats and you can borrow books for free. It’s close to your home so you can get out the house but don’t have to venture all the way across London and can pop home for some lunch. 

Some of my personal favourites were Wimbledon library and Shoreditch library.

The British Museum Library

British Museum FOyer London
© Bell KS

When you google the British Museum library, it shows you pictures of the famous circular library. When I went, it was closed. Instead, I found a great and extremely quiet study/work option – The Anthropology Library and Research Centre. I wrote a whole blog post on it and how to find it but overall it had great facilities, lots of plugs and was super empty. A great option in the middle of central London.

The British Library

The classic and most famous study option in London. It’s a beautiful library with tons of seats. HOWEVER – arrive early if you want to come here! Seats fill up super quickly. I think it’s a good option if you want to get your head down and spend a full day working and studying and you’ll  be in excellent company. 

They also allow you to eat and drink which is great.

Southbank Centre and National Theatre

southbank centre london
Photo by Kutan Ural on Unsplash

Southbank centre has plenty of seating options (you do need to walk around a bit to find them) and good WiFi connection. There’s also a cafe area with seats which you can use without technically buying anything. It’s not the quietest space but it’s right by Waterloo and in a very creative area of London, so good to get innovative. 

Idea Store Whitechapel

I love the Whitechapel Idea Store. It was close to my work so I went pretty frequently. It has tons of seats with plugs, is fairly quiet and gets lots of other students and workers doing the same thing as you. 

A really great option if you’re in East London.

Foyles Bookstore

Inside Foyles Bookstore - © Bell KS

The Foyles Bookstore, right in the heart of London by Tottenham Court Road. The store boasts a huge collection of books spread over 6 floors. On one of them, you can find a cafe. While not technically free, no one really checks whether you have ordered anything and they do have really good drinks and food should you fancy something. 

I love this one because the entire cafe is always seemingly filled with entrepreneurs or workers, discussing exciting new topics or catching up over coffee. Out of all the options, this has the best ‘vibes’. You can also browse the books should you need some more inspiration. What more could you need?

Do you have any other favourite London work or study spaces? Leave a comment 🙂

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1 Comment

  1. Love the idea of studying in a bookshop! I love to work in coffee shops but tend to go to libraries instead so that I don’t spend any money x

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