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Using other libraries

There may be occasions when you want to visit other libraries for research purposes. Please see the schemes mentioned below on how to access libraries across the UK.


Society of College, National and University Libraries (SCONUL) Access is a reciprocal scheme which allows many university library users to borrow or use books and journals at other libraries which belong to the scheme. The scheme covers most of the university libraries in the UK and Ireland.

The SCONUL scheme is there to support research and is not intended to replace the core teaching and learning resources provided to you by Library and Learning Services.

If you are:

  • An academic on an open or fixed term contract
  • A postgraduate research student registered for a PhD, MPhil or similar qualification
  • A part time, distance learning and placement student
  • Or a full time postgraduate

you may be able to borrow limited physical resources from other college or university libraries who are members of the scheme.

If you are:

  • A full time undergraduate student

you may be able to use the physical resources of other college and university libraries for reference.

Access to IT and electronic resources is not part of the SCONUL scheme.

Please note, not every institution supports all above categories for membership of the scheme and if you are registered at our London campus you cannot use other university libraries in London through SCONUL.

Apply for SCONUL Access

To apply for SCONUL Access, please do so from your York St John email account. You must have no outstanding charges or overdue items with the Library.

Apply online for SCONUL Access

We aim to confirm your application by email within 24 hours.

If there is a problem with your Library account, your application may be denied. If this occurs, please contact us.

Using WiFi at other institutions

York St John is a member of eduroam which means you can use WiFi at other eduroam participating institutions. You will need your York St John email address and password to log in.

British Library Reading Rooms (London and Boston Spa)

The British Library have reading rooms open to everyone at their main St Pancras site in London and at their Document Supply Centre in Boston Spa (near Wetherby, West Yorkshire).

You need to pre-book an appointment to renew your Reader Pass or get a new Reader Pass.

Please visit the British Library website for up to date information and opening times.

British Library

Archives and special collections

Many libraries and museums have archives and special collections. To support your learning and research, Library and Learning Services has invested in electronic access to digitised collections of primary source materials and archives. You can find out which resources are available by visiting our primary sources tool page.

However, not all archives and special collections have been digitised and you may wish to visit other institutions. Please contact individual institutions beforehand to see if you are eligible to visit as there may be restrictions in place.

The following services can help you locate material.

Library Hub Discover (formerly COPAC)

Library Hub Discover supports researchers by enabling them to search the catalogues of 177 institutions, including the UK national libraries, university libraries, and specialist libraries.

Library Hub Discover

Archives Hub

The Archives Hub brings together descriptions of thousands of the UK's archive collections. Representing over 330 institutions across the country, the Archives Hub is an effective way to discover unique and often little-known sources to support your research.

Archives Hub

York Public Library

If you live in the York area, you are eligible to join the public library, York Explore.

It is based in Library Square on Museum Street, in the city centre of York, only 0.4 miles from York St John University. They, and other libraries in the York area, can provide another source for reading materials, especially fiction.

Check their website for the latest information on accessing public libraries in York.

Explore York website

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