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Joining and Using the Library

A guide to visiting, finding library collections, using the photocopiers and printing, and how to contact us


Updated 3 March 2022


What are the library's opening hours?

MondayFriday: 10.00am – 7.00pm

Saturday: 10.00am - 5.00pm

From 3 March 2022 it is no longer necessary to book a desk in the Library or Photographic Collection.


What COVID-19 precautions are in place?

From 3 May 2022, we encourage readers to wear a mask when moving between areas indoors and in enclosed spaces which have poor ventilation. If you wish to wear a mask at all times while at the Institute you are of course are welcome to do so, but this will not be a requirement. So, to be clear it is no longer compulsory to wear a mask in the library reading room and stacks.

We are opening windows and doors to allow for extra ventilation on all floors.

Hand sanitiser is provided throughout the library.

The building is cleaned daily and library staff regularly wipe down the Reading Room copiers, scanner and computers. Wipes are available for readers to clean surfaces before use.


Are you accepting new readers?

Yes, we are accepting new readers. Please check our admissions page to see if you are eligible to use the library.

When visiting the Institute for the first time, please make sure you bring the necessary photographic ID stated on our admissions page and, if required, a letter of recommendation. A member of staff in the Reading Room will issue you with your Warburg library card and give you a brief guide to how to use the library.


What do I need to bring with me when visiting the library?

Please bring your library card and a face mask.

If you are visiting the library for the first time, please also bring the form of ID requested on our admissions page, along with a letter of recommendation if you are an MA student or independent scholar.


Do I need to put my belongings in a locker?

Yes, bags should be left in the lockers in the Reading Room corridor and may not be brought into the library.

Suitcases, holdalls and rucksacks may not be brought into the Institute unless they can fit into a locker (41 x 24 x 42 cm). 

As always, you will need to show your bag at Reception when leaving.


Can I browse the shelves?

Yes, the stacks are fully accessible and all collections are open. Please wash or sanitise your hands before handling the books. 


Can I print, photocopy and scan?

Yes. We have an overhead scanner in the Reading Room corridor for digital scans. The scanner is free and you don't need a PaperCut account to use it. You will need a USB stick to save your document.

We also have two copiers for photocopying, printing and limited scanning to email. You need to register for a PaperCut account to use the copiers. See our copying guide for more information on PaperCut.

Please show your books at the Reading Room desk before copying.


Do you offer a scan and deliver service?

No, we don't have the staff available to offer a scanning on demand service. If you require scans and you aren't able to visit the Institute, please order them through Inter Library Loan from your home library. Please note that for copyright reasons we can only supply one article or chapter, or up to 5% of a book.


Do you offer a click and collect service?

No, the Warburg Library remains reference-only and external readers may not borrow books.


Is there somewhere to eat and drink in the Institute?

Yes, the Common Room in the basement is open and available for use by readers. Unfortunately, we are not yet able to offer a lunch or tea service and the self-service tea and coffee facilities have been removed.

As always, no food or drink may be consumed in the library.


COVID-19 Terms and Conditions for using the Warburg Library and Photographic Collection



From 3 March 2022, there is no longer any requirement to book desks in the Library and Photographic Collecton. However, booking remains in place for the student study rooms on the 2nd floor

You can choose your desk at the time of booking, but we cannot guarantee that readers can use the same desk every day if it has been booked by another user.

If you can no longer attend, please cancel your booking through the link in your confirmation email so that it can be allocated to someone else. 

You may only use the desk you have booked in advance. You can browse the stacks and retrieve books from any floor to bring to your reserved desk. It is essential for track and trace that you only use the desk you have already booked in advance. Please do not change desks.


Coronavirus measures 

Please bring only one bag with you when visiting the library. The lockers have been temporarily removed but we are limiting the number of bags brought into the stacks.

Face masks covering the mouth and nose must be worn at all times while in the library. If you do not wear a mask and you are not in an exempt category, you may be asked to leave immediately.

Social distancing rules apply in the library. Please keep two metres away from other readers and staff. 

Please wash your hands thoroughly and often. Hand sanitizer is provided at the entrance to the library and on all floors. Please use it regularly, particularly before handling books.

Please keep to the left in corridors and on stairs. The lift can only be used by one person at the time

Failure to comply with these terms and conditions may result in you being asked to leave the library. You may subsequently have the ability to book a study space withdrawn if we conclude that your conduct may endanger the safety of others.  

Read our general Regulations here

Updated 3 March 2022