Borrowing books and journals

Student books

Information about lending material from Library Services managed buildings and resource centres: 


Your University ID card is also your Library card. When you have found the books you need, you can borrow them using the self-service machines in the Main LibraryBarnes Library and Harding Law Library or take them to a lending desk.

Please note: If you are entitled to book fetching and extended loans you should always borrow books from a staffed service point.


Book and journals should be returned on or before the due date stamped on the date label inside the book or printed on your self-service receipt. Books may be returned via return boxes, on self service machines or at staffed service points. Except for short loan items, books may be returned at any site.

Loan periods and amount

There are three main loan periods: 

  • Short loan - due back at 14.00 the following day
  • Week loan - issued for 7 days
  • Long loan - issued for 28 days for taught students, until the end of June or November for research students and until January each year for academic staff

The maximum numbers of loans which can be taken by different categories of borrowers are:

  • Academic staff: 40
  • Research students: 30
  • Taught students: 16
  • Final year undergraduates: 20
  • Joint honours undergraduates: 20
  • Taught postgraduates: 20
  • Associate staff: 16
  • Support staff: 12
  • External members: 6

Please note: Only two short loan items may be borrowed at once. External members may only borrow short loan items during the vacation.


Borrowers will be charged for material which is returned late. An outstanding fine may prevent individuals from borrowing, renewing or placing reservations.

  • Long loan: 30p per day
  • Week loan: 50p per day
  • Recalled items: 50p per day
  • Short loan: 50p per hour or part of an hour

Renew books 

As long as no one else has reserved them, you may renew books an unlimited number of times without having to take them into a library.

To renew online, log into your Library Account, and select which items you want to renew. If the renewal is successful, you will be given a new return date.If you are unable to renew online please contact the library for help.

Please remember that you are solely responsible for keeping track of all materials you borrow from our libraries.

Please note: Short loan items must be renewed at the library from which they were borrowed and cannot be renewed online.

Recalled books

If you have a book out which another user has reserved, you will receive an email from the library asking you to return it. This may be earlier than the original due date. The new return date will be indicated in this email and is normally 10 days after the reservation was placed.

Many library users continue to use us during the vacations. You should therefore be aware that books may be recalled from you at any time. 

Please note: As books may be recalled at any time, you should not take them out of the country. If you have a book out which is reserved, you will not be able to renew it.

Reserve books

If the book you need is out on loan, you can reserve it via the Library Catalogue

When the book is returned, you will be notified by email and the item will be held at the Lending Desk in the Main Library (or at the relevant site library) for 7days. 

Please note: Short loan items cannot be reserved but can be booked to be collected on a particular day. Please ask a member of staff if you wish to book an item. 

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