Library services: Life at Leicester

The David Wilson Library building is open to all current University of Leicester students and staff. Our reception and enquiry desk is staffed throughout our opening hours, alongside our online enquiry services or email enquiry service

When visiting the library you must bring your university ID card to gain access.

The David Wilson Library is a shared space so please be respectful and considerate of others.

  • Keep to the left when moving around the Library
  • Give each other some space
  • Wear a face mask in crowded spaces throughout the Library (if you can)
  • Wash or sanitise your hands regularly. There are sanitisation stations throughout the Library

The University recommends that you continue to:

  • Book your COVID-19 vaccinations – all adults in England (including international students) can now do so.
  • Have lateral flow tests, twice a week. You can pick home-testing kits up from the reception desks of the Fielding Johnson Building, George Davies Centre and Robert Kilpatrick Clinical Sciences Building (RKCSB), Monday to Friday, from 8.00am-6.00pm. They are also widely available from local pharmacies and can be ordered online from the NHS.

Many of our services continue to be offered digitally, including access to eBooks, eJournals and databases. Use Library Search to search and access digital library resources. You will need to use your IT username and password.

Our Academic Skills Centre, research services, librarians and archives and special collections teams will continue providing support remotely and will be re-introducing face-to-face services in the coming weeks. See contact details for these teams. 

How do I get help with using the Library? 

The Library’s email enquiry service is available or you can talk to staff via online chat at Library Help or by calling 0116 252 2043; and you can book 1-2-1 support sessions with a librarian, research consultant or an academic skills advisor.

What study spaces are available in the Library? 

Current maximum occupancy of the Library is 500, this will be revised in the coming weeks as occupancy limits for the Library are reviewed. There are 92 individual study spaces, which can be booked by undergraduate and taught postgraduate students up to a day in advance.

In addition the Doctoral College Reading Room on the first floor provides 11 bookable silent study spaces for Postgraduate Research Students and University staff.

Booked study spaces are available for anyone to use when vacant but spaces must be given up for anyone who has them booked.

Are group study areas available? 

Group Study Rooms are available for students and can be booked online. As areas re-open around the Library spaces for group work will become available.

Are there PCs and printers in the Library? 

Currently there are 37 PCs, of these 17 can be booked up to a day in advance. There are also 5 PCs in the Doctoral College Reading Room. From September the numbers pf PCs will increase in the Library.

In addition the 21 PCs in the IT Training Room 1 on the ground floor are also available for drop-in use when not used for teaching.

Printers including colour printers are available.

Can I borrow a laptop from the Library? 

Laptops are available for students to borrow and use whilst on campus. They may be borrowed for up to 8 hours or up to 30 minutes before the Library closes, whichever is sooner.

Flexible loan laptops are available for use both on and off campus which may be borrowed for up to 4 weeks (28 days). 

You may request a laptop by emailing to check availability, reserve and arrange a time for collection. Unfortunately, we are unable to post these laptops out.

Can I return my books? 

All loans will continue to renew automatically, unless recalled for another user and there continues to be no fines.

Books may be returned at the self-service machines within the Library or via the drop-box at the front of the Library. Over the summer students can also drop library books off at the John Foster and Nixon Court receptions. 

If you are unable to come onto campus to return your books we accept book returns by post. The Library’s postal address is David Wilson Library, University of Leicester, University Road, Leicester, LE1 7RH.

If you are a registered distance learner or remote learner student we have a separate returns process for you and we will send out your return labels to you.

Can I still place holds on physical items? 

Yes, the print copy, when available, will be made available for you to collect from the collection point in the Express Zone. You can place requests via Library Search on the Library homepage.   

Is there a postal loan service? 

Distance Learners, part time postgraduate research students and registered remote learners may place postal loan requests for print books held in the David Wilson Library and will be supplied with postal labels for their return. You can place requests via Library Search on the Library homepage

Can I request chapters or articles?

Distance Learners, part time postgraduate research students and registered remote learners may request a chapter of a book or an article from a journal. You can place requests via Library Search on the Library homepage.

Can I make inter-library loan requests? 

Continue to place your requests via our Document Supply form and we will try to fulfil them where we can obtain them. Physical items will need to be collected in person.

Can I access the University Archive and Special Collections? 

Access to the Archives and Special Collections is by appointment only, please email

Can I visit and use other university libraries for my studies/research? 

Please check the visiting university’s website for details of their access arrangements. The national SCONUL Access scheme is currently suspended.

Can members of the public or students from other Universities and Colleges use the Library? 

Sorry there is no access, memberships or renewal of membership for non-University of Leicester staff or students, including students from other universities or institutions at this time.