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The Lost Librarian, an escape room experience, comes to Exeter Library

Posted on 09 Jul 2021

Six people, ten books, sixty minutes, one mystery… Can you solve it?

Book now for The Lost Librarian at Exeter Library and test your puzzle-solving abilities! Launching at Exeter Library on Saturday 24th July until Wednesday 4th August, this escape room experience is perfect for a summer holiday fun activity for families and friends.

The Lost Librarian is a ground-breaking escape room for inquisitive explorers of all ages. Using interactive mechanical books, groups of up to six people experience a 60-minute journey, uncovering a fantastical tale of the last known witches in the UK and the legacy that they have left behind. Groups will work as a team to solve the mystery of the Lost Librarian.

Daniel Clark, Creative Director at Evolve said “We have been developing The Lost Librarian, an experiential mechanical story adventure over the last year and we are pleased that this project is ready for a residency at Exeter Library. If you love escape rooms then you’ll love this challenge. It’s perfect for small bubbles of up to six people and the joy is that you can book at a time to suit you. The Lost Librarian was hugely successful at our sell out Library Lates in February 2020, so come along to find out why people loved it! The Lost Librarian will continue its tour of Devon, moving onto Barnstaple and Newton Abbot throughout the summer holidays”.

Devised by Lizzie Johnson (Designer / Fabricator / Producer), Kyle Hirani (Technologist / Roboticist), and Matt Gibbs (Writer / Narrative Designer), the project brings together their passion for art, design, technology, and storytelling, as well as their deep love of games and puzzles, to create an interactive experience that is both playful and engaging.

The Lost Librarian herself is Molly Allison, a librarian who has been researching the Devon Witch Trials and the local legends of their ‘Secret Treasure’. To throw off a mysterious rival, Molly has had to hide her research and the treasure within the library, creating a web of puzzles and clues to protect it – the ‘books’ she has made. The technology that powers the puzzles themselves, enables us to present touch sensitive mazes, logic puzzles, and word searches, as well as puzzles that require very different input, such as having to make certain gestures to unlock a clue.

After completing its run at Exeter Library on 4th August, The Lost Librarian will go on tour. It will be available to book in Barnstaple Library from 7th – 18th August, followed by Newton Abbot Library from 23rd August – 6th September.

The Lost Librarian is part of the Exeter, UNESCO City of Literature Programme. More on UNESCO can be found at  

Tickets are available to book via Eventbrite, for £12 per session. Recommended for ages 12+ unless accompanied by an adult. Find out more and how to book at

To coincide with the launch of The Lost Librarian, the creative team behind the experience have opened the doors to share some of the techniques behind this innovative production in two free masterclasses.

Matt Gibbs is a WGGB Award nominated writer, narrative designer, and editor. He has worked on games such as DICE’s Battlefield 1, Creative Assembly’s Total War: ROME II, and Ubisoft Reflections’ Driver San Francisco, and is a Partner at Talespinners, a cooperative providing writing, narrative design, and consultancy for games. In Matt’s pre-recorded class you can learn all about writing stories for gaming experiences, from computer games through to interactive artworks.

Elizabeth Johnson is a designer and fabricator for animation, theatre and public engagement works and a resident artist at Puppet Place in Bristol. She has designed physical playable experiences big and small, and in her pre-recorded class she will take you through the journey of designing your own interactive artworks, as well as looking into the creative process behind the Lost Librarian.

The whole experience has been designed in order for people to be able to engage with confidence with Covid19 regulations. Groups of 6 maximum to take part at any one time and all surfaces will be cleaned down with disinfectant between each group visit.

The safety of both our staff and our customers are important to us, and we are working hard to ensure libraries provide a safe and protective environment. To find out more about how we are welcoming our customers safely visit

If a booking has to be cancelled due to changes in Government rulings then you will receive a full refund.

Libraries Unlimited believes…

…in the unlimited potential of library services to make a positive difference to people’s lives and communities through a shared love of reading and access to high quality information and facilities.