Library and Archive services

Find out how to access our collections and about the research services we provide



  • The Museum Library and Archives are open to the public, Monday to Friday, 10am to 5pm throughout the year
  • We are a small departmental library and open by appointment only; please contact us at to arrange an appointment
  • We ask that you request the material you would like to consult while making an appointment
  • You can search our catalogues and email us about your area of interest prior to making an appointment
  • Visitors are asked to sign in at the Museum welcome desk upon arrival at the museum; they will also be asked to complete an admissions form once in the reading room
  • No food or drink is permitted in the reading room – the Museum has a café where sandwiches, hot and cold drinks, and cakes can be purchased
  • We have reader computers that can be used to search our catalogues and the web, as well as printer/scanner/copier facilities
  • The reading room has access to Eduroam Wi-Fi, for visitors with academic affiliations, as well as public Wi-Fi access
  • Please note that the reading room is accessed via stairs; if you require ramp access, please let us know when making your appointment


Library reading room, Museum of Natural History

Searching our collections

Our library collections are available to search via SOLO (Search Oxford Libraries Online). Access to other libraries is in most cases restricted to members of the University and Bodleian Card Holders. 

Our archive collections are available to search via the Museum’s Collections Online. Only a small percentage of the museum’s archive collections have been catalogued digitally, so please contact us for more information if you cannot find what you are looking for.

Inter-library loans 

We provide a digital-copies-only service to external institutions requesting inter-library loans. We accept payment via British Library Accounts or IFLA vouchers.

UK copyright law

Unfortunately, we do not have the facility to provide a copy service to individual users. Please contact your local library and they can facilitate an inter-library loan request with us.

Image requests    

Requests for image reproductions for personal, academic and commercial use of our collections can be made through the Library and Archives. Charges may apply for commercial, large academic publishers and large requests.