Accessibility statement

Interlending and Document Supply Service

University staff and students: If the Library does not hold the resource you need for your research, you can ask us to obtain it for you.

  • If you require a whole book or a thesis, please send us a request using the Purchase Request Form and we will try to purchase an ebook or a print copy for the Library.
    • If we are unable to purchase a copy we may borrow a copy from another library for you. We will let you know if we do this.
  • If you require a book chapter, you can request a copy through our Interlending and Document Supply Service: make a chapter request via this formNeed express delivery? If you add an ISBN number it will automate your request, and you'll usually get your item much faster. Search by Book Title here to find the ISBN.
  • If you require an article, you can request journals articles or conference papers via this form.

Before making a request

  • Check YorSearch to see if the item you need is already in stock. We will not normally apply for any item already held by the University Libraries.
  • Check our E-resources guide
  • There is no limit to the number of requests you can make, but bear in mind that the service is expensive for the library, so please try to be selective and use it responsibly.
  • Before requesting an item, please make sure that it is the correct source and is relevant to your studies. Google Books and Google Scholar may be helpful.

If you are doing a project and expect to place more than 15 article requests (eg for a systematic review), please contact us in advance via as there may be a better method for submitting your requests.

What can you request?

Book chapters

  • Each individual chapter counts as one request.
  • Under the terms of the UK Copyright Designs and Patents Act, only one chapter per book can be copied.
  • If you require more than one chapter from the same book, please use the Purchase Request Form and we will try to purchase an ebook or a print copy for the Library.
  • Book chapters will be supplied as an electronic document.

Journal articles and conference papers

  • Under the terms of the UK Copyright Designs and Patents Act, we can only supply a copy of one article from a single journal issue.
  • If you require more than one article from the same issue, please let us know and we will try to borrow the whole issue for you.
  • Articles and chapters will be supplied as an electronic document.


  • Please submit your request for a thesis using our Purchase Request Form and we will attempt to source it for you.
  • Depending on the level of thesis and the awarding institution’s policy, this may be an electronic copy or a loan of the thesis. We will keep you updated on the progress of the request.
  • Theses from the Universities of Oxford or Cambridge are generally not available through the Interlending service. Access is by appointment at Oxford or Cambridge only.
British Doctoral Theses

Please search on EThOS (Electronic Theses Online Service) to see if the required title is already available in a digitised, electronic format for immediate free download; if it isn’t, please submit a request using our Purchase Request Form and we will attempt to source it.

If we have to request digitisation from the owning institution, please allow at least six weeks for the thesis to be supplied to EThOS and then scanned.

Most higher education institutions will not lend original or only copies of their doctoral theses, however, you may be able to visit the institution to consult the thesis in person.

American Doctoral Theses

Make your request using the Purchase Request Form as above. We may be able to order an electronic or paper copy for you to keep.

British and American MA/MSc and all other foreign Theses

Make your request for these using the Purchase Request Form as above. We will try to borrow a copy directly from the awarding institution or obtain an electronic copy for you. This may take some time and is not always successful.

Making a request

How to request

To make an Interlending request

University staff and students:

1. Select the request form you require:

2. Complete the form with as much information as you have.

  • Use the 'Additional Information' box to enter any useful information.

3. Submit the request.

Please note, there is no longer a charge for this service.

External members of the Library:

We are currently unable to offer this service.

You may be able to register for a personal account with the British Library and request copies directly from them. Please see the following information on the British Library website.

Checking request status

Checking your requests

Interlending items you have requested are listed in your Library Account.

Interpreting the status of your request:

Created borrowing request New request that is waiting to be processed by the Library
Request sent to partner A possible lending library has been found and we are waiting for a response
Physically received by the library Item has arrived and is awaiting collection from the Library holdshelf

Cancelling your request

  • If the status of the request is ‘Created borrowing request’ you can cancel it yourself using the ‘Cancel’ option next to it under ‘Actions’.

  • If the status is anything other, please contact the Library to request a cancellation.


Receiving electronic documents

  • Electronic documents will be delivered by email.
  • If your document is supplied from the British Library, you will receive an email with the subject line “British Library Order ... Ready for download”.

Renewing and returning

How to renew your items

Interlending items you have on loan are listed in your Library Account.

If you want to renew an interlending item, please only do so two to three days before the return date.

To renew an item that you have on loan:

  1. Log in to YorSearch and go to your Library Account
  2. Select the checkbox next to the interlending item you want to renew
  3. Select Renew Selected
  4. The Renew All option does not include interlending items
  5. The due date will not change until interlending staff have processed your renewal request
  6. You will be notified of the new return date as soon as possible
  7. Please do not return the book until you have heard from us via email

To renew an item that is for use in the library only:

  • Please contact Interlending via LibAnswers or on +44 (0)1904 323876

Most items can be renewed if they are not needed by someone else. 

How to return items

Interlending items you have on loan are listed in your Library Account, along with the due date.

Please return loans to the Morrell Library or the King's Manor Library by the due date.

Recalled (or lost) items

Recalled and lost items

If you keep an item that has been recalled, or if you lose it, the British Library (which supplies many of the items) may charge you £179.20 to cover administration and the cost of a replacement. This charge is non-refundable. Other libraries will have their own charges.

Visit the British Library at Boston Spa

The Library operates a free weekly minibus service.

Find out more:

Using other libraries

There may be other options for using resources not held in York. The SCONUL Access Scheme gives access to other HE libraries throughout the county and the British Library.

Information for other libraries

We are happy to supply material to other libraries. Please get in touch by email:

Please note, we do not lend:

  • Doctoral Theses
  • Special Collections material (eg York Minster Library, National Railway Museum or Borthwick Institute for Archives material)
  • Items on reading lists or reference items

Help with Interlending

For help or information: