Accessibility statement

Visiting us - COVID-19

The Library is open to students and staff during the pandemic, although not currently to external visitors (due to the limits we have on our capacity because of social distancing). 

Most of our services are operating, and this page gives some more information on what to expect when you visit.

Services we're offering

The libraries on Campus West and at King’s Manor are now open, but they will look and feel a little different to the way things were before the buildings closed

  • We're open from 8am until midnight, seven days a week for studying, printing and borrowing books; the Amazon Lockers will also be available during this time frame. Face-coverings must be worn when you’re in the buildings, and if you don’t have one or forget your own we’ll provide you with one.
  • You can now browse our print materials on the shelves at both Morrell and King’s Manor Library.
  • King’s Manor Library is now open for study space. You will need to book any of our study spaces online using either the calendar for the main Library or King’s Manor Library.
  • The Library Help Desks are available again at Morrell and King’s Manor. We are also continuing to provide a virtual help desk online through email, chat and the phone. This is available 7 days a week, 9am to 5pm.
  • You can now get IT Support on the first floor of the Fairhurst, for instances where they’re unable to help you remotely.
  • The Borthwick Institute for Archives is now open by appointment. Appointments are available 10am to 4pm Monday to Thursday. Find out more about the Borthwick reopening and how to book an appointment.
  • The Library Cafe is now open for a takeaway service with a reduced menu. The cafe is open Monday to Friday from 10am to 4pm.
  • You can now book places to study in the library learning space at the Piazza Building via the booking calendar.
  • The York Minster Library is currently closed during the lockdown.
  • Laptop loans are now available again, at the Morrell, the Piazza Building and at King's Manor.

Safety measures

Our main priority is making our services work for everyone whilst keeping everyone safe. Here are some of the things we’re doing:

Face coverings

Following government guidelines and University policy, all users (and Library staff) are obliged to wear a face covering when you’re in Library buildings. We will provide you with a face covering if you don’t have one or forget it.

Book quarantine

Books will be quarantined for 72 hours after they're returned to ensure infection control.

Study spaces

We’re offering a reduced number of spaces available to individual students for 2m socially distanced studying (no group study areas due to social distancing guidelines). These include PC study spaces, and are bookable in advance.


Our lockers are unavailable (unless you need to collect belongings currently in them, which should be arranged in advance).

Track and Trace

When you enter the buildings please make a note of the link to our online Track and Trace form, which we’re using to support the national Coronavirus Track and Trace system.

Soft furnishings

Soft furnishings like our sofas are out of use - this means that (at least initially) the Morrell Lounge, Living Room and some of Fairhurst will be out of bounds.

Library staff

We have marshalls in the building to direct you and give advice about social distancing. You can also ask for guidance at our Help Desk, which is now open with social distancing measures in place.

Hand sanitiser

Hand sanitiser has been provided at specific location points throughout the building.

Find out more

We hope that this gives you a better understanding of what is happening when. As soon as we have useful information on any of these topics we’ll let you know via Twitter, FacebookInstagram and the Library News section of the website.

We know that students and staff want to get back to using our services and resources normally as quickly as possible, but we can’t rush this process, no matter how much we want to welcome you back. The pandemic is still ongoing and the wellbeing of our community at York is the priority. We’re working with the University to reopen our buildings in the quickest, safest way possible.

If you have any questions about any of this, please get in touch.