Borrowing, Renewing and Returning Library Material

Self Service options    Reserving books  
Self-Service Collection of Reservations    Inter-Site Loans Service    
Laptop loans   

Library materials can be borrowed through:

Library materials can be renewed through:

Library materials can be returned through:

Students can borrow up to 20 books.

Loan Periods

Books can be borrowed for different amounts of time depending on the loan period. Loan periods range from 4 hours, which indicates that a book is in high demand, to 4 weeks which is a normal loan. Check your receipt or the date label for the date the item is due for return.

Borrowing Learning and Teaching Materials

Students and staff can borrow 20 books and up to 8 AV items from this collection in addition to the standard loan entitlement.

Borrowing at the Conservatoire

Students and staff can borrow 30 normal loan items; at the Conservatoire this includes week, two week and term loans.

Music for orchestral and choral performances is in addition to the standard loan entitlement.

Performance material at the Conservatoire

Parts for Conservatoire performances and classes are available when they are listed on the board behind the Help Desk, and not before. (This is because they are obtained from different places and have to be prepared for loan. We also need to wait for player lists to be supplied by the Orchestral Manager.)

Parts are due back one week after the class or concert, and cannot be renewed.

Keeping you informed about library items you have borrowed

Two days prior to your library items being due for return we send an email to your University email address. The reminder aims to prompt you to renew or return your books in time and avoid fines. In case you miss the first email we send a "due today" reminder via email. We also send a mobile phone text message when the item becomes more than a week overdue.
Emails and texts are sent as a courtesy.

Self Service options

Book return boxes

Items may be returned using the book return boxes located in the library foyer at Kenrick, outside the Mary Seacole Library at City South campus and in  the Conservatoire foyer (when the library  is closed).

Kenrick, Mary Seacole, School of Art and Curzon Libraries have self-service machines for the issuing, renewing and returning of books.

You will need your library card and PIN to access the facility.

A receipt is given each time you borrow, return or renew books.

Self Renewal and Self Reservation

These services are available through the Library Catalogue 'My Library Record'.

Reserving Books

If you need to borrow an item that is out on loan to someone else, you can reserve it.  This means that the person who has it will not be able to renew it. When the item is returned it will be kept at the reservations collection point for you.  Some books are in heavy demand and several people will have placed Reservations.  You may not be the first in the queue for the returned book. Reservations are dealt with strictly in order of when the request was placed.

How do I reserve a book that is out on loan?

If ALL copies of an item are out on loan, you can reserve a copy yourself.  Find the item on the Library Catalogue and click on the ‘Request’ button next to the title. Follow the instructions on the screen. You will need your Borrower number and PIN.

For items not held within Birmingham City University, please complete a reservation/ stock suggestion card (available from the Help Desk) and we will consider buying them for the library.

What if the item is not on loan?

You will need to come into the library and check the shelves and the shelving trolleys. If you still cannot find the item then complete a Reservation Card and hand it in at the Help Desk.

How will I know when my Reservation is ready to collect?

Check the progress of your reservations in ‘My Library Record’ via the library catalogue. ‘Active’ appears against those currently reserved for you.   ‘Waiting Collection’ (in red) indicates items that are ready for you. The notification will be sent  to your Birmingham City University student email address.  

Self-service Collection of reservations

At Kenrick, Mary Seacole and Gosta Green Libraries, you will be able to collect items you have reserved yourself any time the library is open. Pick up your reservation and issue it to yourself using the self-service terminals.

Where can I collect my reservation from?

Collection points are

Kenrick Library – behind the main issue desk

Mary Seacole Library – behind the self-service machine 

How will I know which reserved item is mine?

Your reserved item will have a number made up from the first letter of your surname and the last six digits of your student id, for example D 167986

First look along the shelf for the letter your surname begins with.  In that section books will be arranged in number order.

For staff and external borrowers the unique number will be the first letter of your surname followed by the first six digits of your borrower number.


How do I issue it to myself?

Use the self-service machine at the reservations collection point.  You will need your library pin number.   Please note – if you have overdue loans on your record you will not be able to issue your reserved item until you have returned or renewed them.


When will I have to collect it by?

We will keep your reservation at the collection point for exactly one week.  After that it will be returned to the open shelves or passed to the next borrower in the reservations queue.


What happens if someone else takes out my reserved item?

This should not happen because the issue system will only issue a reserved item to the person who has reserved it.


If I have reserved a DVD will I be able to collect that myself, outside staffed hours?

No, you will have to pick this up from Help Desks during staffed hours.  Other audio-visual media, including videos, will also have to be collected from the Help Desk during staffed hours.


What about Inter Library Loans, can I collect them myself?

No.  Self-service collection is being introduced for reserved items from Birmingham City University stock.  Items which have been requested from other institutions will be available for collection from Help Desks during staffed hours.

If you have any queries :-

For Curzon Library please contact the Document Delivery Office on 0121 331 5295 or send an email to

For Mary Seacole Library please call 0121 331 5278 or send an email to


Inter Site Loan Service

What if I want an item from another campus?

Complete a Reservation Card and hand it in at the Help Desk. Library staff will contact the other campus and arrange to have the item sent over for you.  Please allow a few days for the item to be transported between the campuses.  If it is more convenient you may go to any of the campuses yourself and take books out.

If you are not on Campus you can email us giving full details on the Inter Site Loan Request.

Laptop Loans      

There are a number of laptops available for loan at Mary Seacole & Kenrick Library.

Who can borrower a laptop?
Laptops can only be loaned out to Birmingham City University students or staff provided that they are in good standing with the library and that they have an appropriate ID card.

Where can I borrow one from?
Laptops can be borrowed from the Help Desk during staffed hours. A liability form will need to be signed and the terms and conditions  of use read. (here to view the terms and conditions)

How long can they be borrowed for?
At Mary Seacole Library they can be borrowed for a day during staffed hours.  We also have week loan laptops. At Kenrick Libraries they can be borrowed for a maximum of 4 hours during staffed hours.  Please note that laptops must be returned before the Help Desk closes.

Can they be taken out of the library?
At Mary Seacole Library the day loan laptops are for use in the library and cannot be taken off the premises. The one week loan laptops however can be taken out of the library. At Kenrick library they are for use in the library only and cannot be taken off the premises.

Can they be renewed?
No. Laptops are non-renewable as there is no booking system.

Are fines charged for late return?
Yes.  Fines are charged at 75p per hour or part of an hour for late return. For Mary Seacole Library week loan laptops fines are charged at 5 per day or part day for late return.

For further information please speak to staff at the Help Desk!

This page last updated by Graham Dix.