Reopening our study spaces
We are operating both on-site and remote enquiry services. Please visit Our libraries page to check our on-site service hours.
Our remote enquiry services run from Monday to Friday 09.00 - 21.00, Saturday and Sunday 10.00- 18.00
Our roadmap to reopening
We are continuing to work hard to provide the high-quality Library Services you expect remotely, while beginning a phased reopening of our library buildings. We are following Government and College guidance and have taken measures to ensure that the safety of our staff and library users is central to our planning.
- We’re ensuring that you can access as much content as possible online to minimise disruption to your studies and research. For example, we’ve increased our e-books by 13%.
- From Monday 17 August we are offering a new Click and Collect book service at all our campus libraries, as well as providing the facility to request scanned copies of book chapters. These services are available to Imperial students, staff and NHS borrowers only.
- We’re working to determine maximum capacity and safe use of study space. This will include marking desks and providing hand sanitiser, in line with work across College.
- We’re preparing to implement a new security system for our books which will reduce contact with self-issue machines.
- At our medical campus libraries and at the Silwood Park Campus Library we’re investigating ways for users to browse shelves safely
We are currently in phase 3.
Phase 0 - March to July
Libraries closed and online services in operation.
Phase 1 - early August
Library buildings closed to users. Staff processing the backlog of returned books and removing them from user accounts. Online services in operation, see Remote services and library closures.
Phase 2 - from Monday 17 August
Library buildings are now open for borrowing books with our new Click and Collect service. Users may also visit the libraries to return books.
A new Scan and Send service allows users to request chapters of books to be sent via email.
We will place all books in quarantine for four days before returning them to the shelves.
We are tagging books ready for the introduction of a new contactless security system.
Phase 3 - from Monday 14 September
In phase 3 our libraries will be open for socially-distanced study for Imperial students and staff, and NHS staff only.
You can expect to see:
- Deep cleaned study spaces and staff areas
- Antibacterial gel dispensers and cleaning materials at key locations
- Cleaning materials and dividers at self-service machines
- Protective screens at all enquiry desks
- Desks and PCs will be arranged to ensure social distancing is maintained
- Signage explaining social distancing and seating arrangements
- You will be able to browse the shelves
- Study rooms 1A, 1B, 1D, 2C will be bookable for up to one user per room for individual silent study
- All remaining study rooms are for individual silent study only
We will manage the number of users in our buildings using a traffic light system and may need to restrict access at times. This is to ensure that social distancing is maintained.
Face-to-face enquiry services may be reduced but staff will be available to answer your queries online.
Many of our staff will continue to work remotely and drop-ins and meetings with librarians are likely to be online. We will deliver library inductions and lunchtime workshops online.
Services or opening hours may change at short notice due to changes in Government guidance or staff availability.