Click here to skip to content

Operating hours and public holiday closures

Standard Operating Hours

The Document Supply Service is available to process your automated* requests from 08:00 Monday to 04:30 Saturday, except when closed for English public holidays.

Customer Services Orders are also available to accept any 2-hour and 24-hour requests by email, fax or telephone, during our core business hours of 08:00 to 17:00 each day, Monday through to Friday.  Any orders received by the team outside of these hours will be timed from 08:00 on the next working day. Please note that a service fee is charged for the inputting of each order in addition to the article delivery cost and applicable copyright fees.

In the event of an English public holiday, these will be timed from 08.00 on the next working day. Requests for items urgently required during the period 17:00 to 08:00 should be made by one of our automated methods of ordering.

On rare occasions, the 2-hour service may have to be restricted without prior notice for operational or technical reasons.

*Automated requesting methods interface directly into our request processing and delivery systems and include BLDSS, ARTEmail, and Explore the British Library. For more information on any of our requesting methods please contact customer-services@bl.uk

Customer Services

If you have any questions or a problem with our services, you can speak with a member of our Customer Services staff between 08.30 and 19.00 (UK time), Monday to Friday, except when the Library is closed for a public holiday.

Tel: +44 (0)1937 546060

Minicom (for the use of the hearing impaired): +44 (0)1937 546434

Fax: +44 (0)1937 546333

Email: customer-services@bl.uk

Public Holiday Closures - 2014/15

All Document Supply services will be closed on the following dates:

Christmas: 04:30 on 24 December – 08:00 on 29 December (UK time)
New Year:  17:00 on 31 December – 08:00 on 02 January (UK time)

  • All Document Supply services will be closed from Wednesday 24 December to Sunday 28 December inclusive and on Thursday 01 January
  • The Boston Spa Reading Room will close at 16:30, as normal, on Tuesday 23 and Wednesday 31 December
  • Customer Services will close at 17:00 on Tuesday 23 December and Wednesday 31 December
  • Customer Services will be open from 08:30 until 17:30 on Monday 29, Tuesday 30 December and Friday 2 January.

Christmas:

  • We will not process any requests received after 02:30 (UK time) on Wednesday 24 December until our Document Supply service reopens on Monday 29 December at 08:00 (UK time). This includes any requests for the 2 hour service.
  • All requests received at the British Library after 02:30 on 24 December will be timed from 08:00 on 29 December.
  • Articles available for Immediate Download will continue to be delivered during this period.

New Year:

  • We will not process any requests received after 15:00 (UK time) on Wednesday 31 December until our Document Supply service reopens on Friday 2 January at 08:00 (UK time). This includes any requests for the 2 hour service.
  • All requests received at the British Library after 15:00 on 31 December will be timed from 08:00 on 02 January.
  • Articles available for Immediate Download will continue to be delivered during this period.