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St Antony's College Library: How to borrow, return, renew & reserve

Library etiquette

Help us to keep the library a welcoming and productive space by following these rules...

Photo: Library entrance (photo by Elizabeth Nyikos).

Guests in the Library

The Library has limited capacity. To prioritise current members, please do not admit visitors without permission.

Photo: Annunciation painting in Library Apse (photo by Elizabeth Nyikos).

Help us to maintain a quiet study space

Be considerate of your fellow readers and keep conversations to a minimum (even whispered ones!)

Photo: illustration from Sketches by Boz by Charles Dickens (1890). 


So that they are kept in the best possible condition for other readers to use, please do not write in or annotate library books. 

Food and Drink

All drinks (in cups/bottles with secure lids) are welcome. To keep the library tidy, and to prevent book-nibbling pests, please do not bring in food.

Photo: illustration from Sketches by Boz by Charles Dickens (1890).

Need a break? 

It's important to take breaks from studying. Have something to eat and catch-up with friends in our Breakout Space! (Located on the ground floor of the Old Main Building)


Before you take a book out of the Library, please make sure to record your loan. Take it to the Library's self-issue computer (opposite the help desk), and follow the instructions on screen. Remember to scan the College's barcode within the book's first pages. If you have any difficulty using the self-issue machine in the absence of staff, please complete borrowers' slips (available on the same desk).


1. To renew your loans on SOLO, make sure you are logged in to SOLO using your single sign-on (SSO).

2. Select 'Loans' from the drop-down list in the top right hand corner. This will take you to a list of all the books you have on loan from all Oxford Libraries. 

3. From the list of loans, click 'Renew' on the items you wish to renew. This will renew your item until the end of the next loan period.

Note, you cannot renew books which have requested by other readers, or when you have reached the maximum renewal period (approx. 3 terms + 2 vacations). If you would like to continue borrowing a book beyond the maximum renewal period, please bring it back to the Library and ask the Library staff to re-issue it to you. 

Please note, the Bodleian Libraries have different renewals processes. For further information, see 'renew items' instructions on the Bodleian Libraries website. 


Library book return box in usePlease leave returned books in the Library's drop box. The box is accessible to members 24/7 outside the entrance to the main reading room. Please do not leave books from other libraries here. 


Lost / damaged loans

Please let the Library staff know about any books which have been lost or damaged whilst on loan to you (see library rules). You may be expected to cover replacement costs. However, if there's any chance that a misplaced book could be retrieved and you will not be leaving Oxford imminently, extra time to search for it will be granted.​​​

Entitlements and loan periods

  Total loans permitted Loan duration Maximum renewal period**
Current students, Fellows and Academic Visitors at St Antony's 20* See table below 504 days
Associate members (incl. support staff, current members of Nuffield College, the Maison Française d’Oxford) 3 7 days 14 days

*Please speak to a member of the Library staff if you wish to borrow more than 20 books; limits may be exceeded in exceptional circumstances.

**504 days is roughly equal to the length of 3 terms + 2 vacations. Books cannot be renewed beyond the parameters of loan periods (see table below); return dates will only change when the next loan period begins.

Those who are not current students, Fellows, Academic Visitors, or Associate members are not usually allowed to take items out of the Library, but may consult materials which are inaccessible within the Bodleian Libraries on site during staffed hours (by prior appointment). 

Items taken out (or last renewed) during: ...are due for return/renewal on***:
6 Jan 2024 - 23 Feb 2024

7 Mar 2024

(Thurs 8th week, Hilary Term 2024)

24 Feb 2024 - 12 Apr 2024

23 Apr 2024

(Tues 1st week, Trinity Term 2024)

13 Apr 2024 - 31 May 2024

13 Jun 2024

(Thurs 8th week, Trinity Term 2024)

***Borrowed items must be returned before your membership of the College ends. Renewal/return dates are affected by expiry dates of University cards. You must return (and cannot renew) any books which have been requested by others. 

Reservations and recalls


If you want to borrow an item which is on loan (indicated by a due date on SOLO) you may "request" it (following the same process used for requesting material from offsite storage), to ensure it is reserved for you when it is returned to the Library.


If you would like a book to be returned with some urgency, please contact the Library staff. Staff will contact the current borrower and ask them to return the required item as soon as possible.

Click and collect

Most College Library books are available on open shelves, and may be collected and checked out by readers using the Library's self-issue machine. If you have any difficulty accessing materials, please email the Library staff for assistance.

The Library staff are usually able to fetch requested items within 3 working days - please alert staff if you need an item(s) urgently. Note, delivery will be delayed if a book is on loan to another reader (borrowed books will not be listed as "Available" on SOLO - a due date will be visible instead).


You will be notified by email when items are ready for collection.

You may collect requested items from a trolley near the entrance to the Main Reading Room at any point within the following 7 days. Your book(s) may be identified by a code comprised of the first 3 letters of your surname and the last 4 numbers of your University card. Once you find your book, you may take it and leave.


If you have a disability, we encourage you to contact the Librarian to discuss how we can support you. 

Unfortunately, the Library's main reading room and book stacks are not wheelchair accessible. However, alternative arrangements for collecting and returning books may be made; Library staff are happy to fetch items for you if you cannot use / have difficulty using stairs.

Please find more information for disabled readers here:

Requesting scans of resources

Please complete our Scan Request form to request scanned sections of items held in print within St Antony’s College Library. In compliance with UK copyright law, the Library can usually provide up to one chapter or 5% of a copyright work, or one article per journal.