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Special Collections & Archives logo : Visiting & Using

SC&A includes manuscripts and archives, medieval to modern; early and finely printed books, and science fiction collections.



  • Reading Room

    The Special Collections and Archives (SC&A) reading room has places for 19 readers, with power sockets and wireless internet access (via eduroam or Guestnet). Readers may apply to use their own digital camera (no flash).

  • Teaching Room

    The SC&A teaching room can be booked by academics for lectures and classes of up to 12 students. Items from the collections can be made available for the session and staff are available to discuss the collections.

What to remember when using SC&A materials:

  • On arrival at Special Collections & Archives, please leave coats and bags in the secure foyer (intercom access)
  • At the Reception desk, please sign the register of readers
  • In the Reading Room, only pencils or laptops, tablets or other mobile devices may be used for taking notes; material must not be written on or marked in any way
  • Food and drink must not be consumed in the Reading Room
  • Permission is required to photograph any items
  • Please note that the Collections are held in closed access storage. The Library catalogue contains records for all printed material, and there are online finding aids for archives and manuscripts
  • All readers must abide by our reading room regulations, and follow the document handling guidelines provided. 

How to order copies of SC&A materials.

  • Copying services are available subject to copyright regulations, but please note that the physical condition of an item may prohibit any copying.
  • All photocopying, scanning and photography orders for copies of Special Collections and Archives materials are carried out by Special Collections and Archives staff, with the exception of self-service digital photography (permission required)
  • All orders will be processed promptly, but readers should expect to wait at least 3 days for photocopying or scanning orders and 2 weeks for photographic orders
  • Download and print SC&A copying request form (PDF)
  • If you wish to use any images from Special Collections & Archives in print or electronic publications, a licence is required, for which there may be a further charge
  • Download and print SC&A licensing request form (PDF)


For appointments & enquiries

To consult material, you must contact us in advance to make an appointment. Appointments must be made by 4pm at the latest the day before your intended visit.

Please provide the reference numbers, titles, dates and any further applicable information (such as issue no. or volume) of the material you wish to consult. This information may be located via the online catalogues.

Non-University of Liverpool visitors should bring some form of photo ID (e.g. driving licence, travel pass, passport).

Opening Times

Saturday & Sunday - Closed

How to find us

The Special Collections & Archives reception area and reading room is on the ground floor of the Grove Wing, Sydney Jones Library.

The Sydney Jones Library is building 423 on the University campus map.

The physical address is: Sydney Jones Library, Chatham Street, Liverpool, L69 7WZ.

While the postal address is: Special Collections and Archives, Sydney Jones Library, University of Liverpool, PO BOX 123, Liverpool, L69 3DA .