New library orientation guides for the start of Semester 1, September 2021

We have put together a suite of library orientation guides online, which you might find useful to view before you return to campus to use our libraries, or if you are coming to campus for the first time. There is one for each library site, for example, the ECA Library at Evolution House, West Port, the Art & Architecture Library at Minto House, Chambers Street, and the Main Library at George Square, plus there is an orientation for the digital library too!
You can access the full range of library orientation guides here:

Book returns now possible at Main Library!

We are pleased to be able to announce that Book Returns are now possible at the Main Library, George Square:

You are now able to return your library books to the Main Library, George Square: Monday – Friday, 10.00am – 4.00pm.
All University of Edinburgh Library books from the Main Library and site libraries can be returned to the Main Library.
We regret we are currently not able to accept the return of laptops.
When you come to the Main Library to return books please note:

  • You may be required to queue outside the Library, following social distancing guidance.  Entry is on a ‘one in / one out’ basis for this service. Please follow signage and advice from Library staff managing access to the building.
  • There is no general access to the Main Library at this time.
  • Entry is via the main doors to use the book returns machine in the entrance area only: there is no entry through the barriers to the main ground floor or to any other part of the Library.
  • The Ground Floor Helpdesk is closed – all enquiries should be directed to the Information Services Helpline at .
  • No toilet facilities are available in the Library.
  • No café or refreshments are available in the Library.

Unable to return your books in person?
If you are not currently able to return your books at the Main Library please hold onto them.
All books have been renewed until 31 August 2020 and no fines will be applied to books that cannot be returned because of Covid-19.
We are looking at ways to expand the availability of book returns and to open up more of our Library services and will provide updates on this webpage as plans evolve:
Thank you for your co-operation.

Covid-19 library update 24th March 2020

Please note that the University closed the Main Library at George Square at 5.00pm on 23rd March, and all libraries will now be closed until further notice.
For students with appointments at Student Counselling – you will be contacted directly to arrange an alternative.
The University is looking into alternative provision of safe study spaces for those that need it, and an update will be sent out as soon as possible from Tracey Slaven, Deputy Secretary Strategic Planning. 
Please heed the Government advice and stay home and practice safe social distancing at all times.
You can check the latest updates and information from the Library at




Main Library at George Square to go 24/7!

The University Main Library at George Square will be opening 24/7, from 20th March 2017. A lot of work by Library, Security and Estates staff behind the scenes has gone into making this possible.
For more information, please see the announcement at
and the Main Library webpage at


Pop Up Library season begins

The University Library is holding a series of Pop Up Library events at the Main Library, George Square, for the next 8 weeks. All sorts of info sessions will be taking place to promote different aspects of the many diverse services and collections that the University Library offers.
There will be two sessions on ECA-related matters: a pop up hands-on session on the ECA Artists’ Books collection, at 3.00pm – 4.00pm on Monday 3rd November, and a more general session on what the ECA Library can offer you, at 11.00am – 12.00 noon on Thursday 6th November.
There are dozens of other sessions throughout the Pop Up Library season. These include sessions on the Centre for Research Collections, the University Art collections, the musical instrument collections, and all aspects of services and collections of the University Library. The sessions will be a chance for you to meet library, archive and museum staff from the University, to chat about the collections and services, and to find out more about what it is like to work with and care for the amazingly rich and diverse collections that the University Library holds.
For more info about the Pop Up Library season take a look at the blog at