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The Manuscripts Reading Room is open to all readers with a Library readers card.  You can find information about Library membership here.  

It is not necessary to make an appointment to view items in the Reading Room, but readers are strongly advised to let us know in advance when they are coming and what they wish to see.  This can be done either by e-mail or telephone; please see our contacts page for details.

The room is open from 09.30 until 18.50 Monday to Friday, and from 09.30 to 16.30 on Saturday.  Items for consultation can be ordered in advance.  Please send a message to  Items can also be ordered at the staff desk using the order slips provided.  Items will be fetched as quickly as possible, but at busy times, and especially in the summer months, some delay may be unavoidable. Fetching is suspended between 12:45 and 14:00; orders for items required during that time should be handed in before 12:30. Fetching finishes for the day at 18.20. 

Only pencils and laptop computers may be used in the Reading Room.  All readers to the Manuscripts Reading Room are required to register when entering the room, and must leave prohibited items in the lockers provided.  These include, but are not limited to: pens, coats, bags of any kind, any items of food or drink, and blades of any kind.  

The desk is always staffed by at least two members of staff who will be happy to help you with ordering items, enquiries and with the other services which are available.  Please go to our Services page for a full list of the services we offer.