Skip to Main Content

Lady Margaret Hall Library: Using LMH Library

Information about LMH Libray and our collections
Subjects: College Libraries

Purpose of this guide

This guide is intended for students and researchers at Lady Margaret Hall, as well as others at the University of Oxford seeking information about LMH Library. 

Use this guide to find out about the collections, services and staff support available at LMH Library, as well as guidance regarding disability support, information on past and present exhibitions, and our special collections. 

Lady Margaret Hall was one of the first colleges founded to allow women to study in Oxford. To this day we strive to be inclusive and reach out to new communities. The Library is a central part of college life, supporting the academic pursuits of all college members by providing them with a gorgeous space to work in, filled with books covering all the subjects studied here. We are one of the larger college libraries, both in terms of study spaces and the size of our collections.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) measures

During the pandemic, we have made some changes to our usual library services in order to keep everyone safe:

Entrance to the building is via the lower floor, opposite Toynbee, through the powered doors to the left of the big staircase. Please sanitise your hands before entering. There is no booking system, but remember to use your fob to enter (so we can store your details for NHS Test & Trace). Exit via the middle floor and down the main staircase (or via the lower floor entrance for people with accessibility requirements).

Facemasks and Sanitiser
Facemasks are expected at all times inside the library, just like any other shared indoors space.

There are hand sanitiser points by the entrance, exit, printer/photocopier/scanner, and self-service machine. Please use them.

Study Spaces
Studying in the library is allowed, but only at certain desks – the PCs and desks within two metres of other desks are closed, and marked with signs. Group study tables are for silent group study by household groups only. The desks are cleaned regularly, but cleaning supplies are also provided for you to clean the desks yourself before and after use.

Nothing may be left on desks when you aren’t present, so that they can be cleaned. Please return all books that you have used to a reshelving trolley, even if you haven’t checked them out. If you have checked them out, please check them in first via the self-service machine.

Quarantining books
All returned books, and all books left on reshelving trolleys, will be quarantined for at least two days before being reshelved.

Book delivery
If you want books to be delivered to your college room, for example because you are self-isolating or are in a higher risk category or have accessibility requirements, you can email us at and we will aim to deliver them within one working day. We can sometimes deliver to addresses outside college too, please email us to discuss this.

Key Links

Requesting Books

Do we not have a book on your reading list, and all the copies in your subject library are on loan? Is there a new edition of a key textbook? Do you need a book not available anywhere in Oxford? We encourage you to recommend books for the Library, either by email at, via the suggestion sheet at the entrance, or by speaking to us in our office. 

IT, Printing, and Photocopying


Library computers are currently unavailable for use. 


All print jobs need to be uploaded online at Sign-in with your SSO, select Web Print, and follow the instructions on the screen

Select the correct printer in order to not be charged at a higher rate (e.g. select lmh-francium\WebPrintBlackAndWhite SingleSided if you do not need your document to be in colour or printed on both sides). The lmh-francium\StudentPrintQueue option will print colour and double sided by default. 

Print jobs are released by tapping your card on the card reader at the printer. 

Printing and photocopying charges are added to your battels, if you go over your free allowance. Undergraduates have a free allowance of 150 single sided mono copies per year, and graduates have 300.

Scanning is free.


We have Eduroam throughout the building, as well as ethernet ports around the computers and desks.

Layout of the Library

The entrance to the Library is on the lower floor (through the powered doors), where you can find the printers, photocopier, and Freddy the skeleton. The books on this floor cover sciences, engineering and medicine (500-699), fine arts and music (700-799), and biography, geography, travel and world history (900-929). This floor also contains the Law Library, which is reference only during term, and contains a wide selection of books and journals. You can also find the Stacks here, which is where serial publications and older books are kept, as well as the Joyce and Lawrence Lacerte Rare Books Room (you can find more information at

An image of the Law Library on the lower floor of the Library


The staircases at either end of the floor lead up to the middle floor, where the main library exit is (for those with accessibility requirements the exit is via the lower floor entrance). This floor contains the self-issue machine, exhibition display cases, and the staff offices. The books on this floor cover philosophy, religion and the social sciences (100-399, except for 300-309), and history (930-999). 

An image of the middle floor of the library


From here the staircases lead up to the upper floor, where the languages (400-499) and literature (800-899) books are kept. This floor is also home to the room dedicated to sociology and women's studies (300-309), and the locked Briggs Room, where our special collections live.

 An image of the gallery floor of the Library

Borrowing, Returning, and Renewing books

Most books may be borrowed, except for the journals, dictionaries, and some other reference books. Law books can be borrowed over the vacations only.  

College members may borrow up to 15 books at a time, and may renew their loans up to 4 times (if no-one else has requested them). Undergraduates borrow books for two weeks at a time or an entire vacation, Postgraduates for an entire term or vacation, Fellows and Staff for an entire year.

Borrowing a Book

The self-issue machine is available at the entrance to the library. Scan your University card, and then the book's barcode (the book must be all the way down in the valley, and slowly pushed all the way to the back, until you hear a clunk). If you have any difficulties, please contact the library staff during opening hours, or fill in the loans form next to the machine.

If the security alarm goes off, the librarians will have been emailed a photo of you leaving the library. To stop us having to chase you, please fill in the details on the loans form.

Returning a Book

Use the self-service machine to check in books, following the instructions on screen (take care to put the book all the way down in the valley, and to slide it slowly all the way to the back, until you hear a clunk). Once you've checked the book in, leave it on the reshelving trolley.

Checking and Renewing your Loans

This can be done via My Account within SOLO (, using your Single Sign-On. You may keep track of all your loans and reservations, and make renewals in this way. Check out the LibGuide for help on using SOLO (

If your book is already overdue, you will need to contact us at to renew it for you.

Contact the Library

LMH Library is open to college members via fob access 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

The Library is open to non-LMH visitors by appointment (email during staffed hours, Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. We are trying to limit external visitors as much as possible during the pandemic.

Lady Margaret Hall Library
Norham Gardens
United Kingdom

Telephone: (01865) 274361

A picture of James, smiling in front of a bookshelf.

James Fishwick (Librarian)

Contact James for appointments to visit the library or to request new books for the library.

(01865) 274361

A picture of Sally, smiling in front of a bookshelf.

Sally Hamer (Assistant Librarian)

Contact Sally with any queries or problems, to renew your books, or discuss lost books and lost property.
 (01865) 274236

A picture of Isambard, a brown-grey Siberian forest cat.

Isambard (Librarian's Cat)

Disability Support

Step-free access is only available to the Lower Floor, which has two height-adjustable desks on it. We are happy to offer extended loans, proxy borrowing, book delivery or other adjustments for students who need them. For more details, an access guide, and a list of available equipment have check out our accessibility page at

Library Rules

The Library is a quiet environment intended for study; talking should be in a low voice and kept to a minimum. Mobile phones and laptops should be on silent mode.

Food and drink is forbidden (with the exception of water in a bottle).

Books removed from the Library must be properly issued via the self-issue computer, or, if the self-issue computer is out of order, by filling in the manual borrowing sheet. Removing books from the Library without going through either of these procedures is theft.

Books should not be lent by borrowers to other people; they remain the responsibility of the person who borrowed them from the Library.

Fines for overdue books are charged at 10p per day. These will be charged to your battels. Long overdue books (due back at the start of term or before, but not returned by the end of 6th week) will face a £10 fine plus the cost of the book's replacement.

Please take any personal belongings with you when you leave your desk. The Library is tidied regularly, and lost property can be found on the Lost and Found table in the centre of the middle floor.