Inter-Library Loans

If you need to fill a gap in your research and the library doesn’t own the item you need, we can borrow that all-important book or journal article just for you!

Each year students and members of staff can make a number of requests free of charge using our Inter-Library Loans service.

See our terms and conditions for the number of items you can request or borrow each academic year and at one time.


How to request an inter-library loan
What happens after your request has been placed?
Terms and conditions
Other services


How to request an inter-library loan

  • Make sure your library account is clear of any fines and you are not blocked from borrowing
  • Read the copyright declaration box on the form and sign to indicate that you agree to the terms - we can accept scanned or typed signatures
  • Email your completed Inter-library loan request form to or hand it in at the Service Desk on the entrance level of the library

There are limits to the number of requests you can have each academic year, and a limit to the number you can have at one time - read the terms and conditions below for details


What happens after your request has been placed?

We ask the British Library for inter-library loans, but if they can’t supply or lend them, we try to borrow them from another university library.

If the British Library can supply it takes between two to five working days for journal articles or chapters to arrive and seven working days for books. It may take longer if we need to request your inter-library loan from elsewhere.

We will email if:

  • There are any delays
  • We cannot supply the item
  • We have a query about the item you are requesting
  • You have reached your annual limit of free requests
  • The total number of items you can borrow at one time has been reached


Journal Articles and chapters

  • If your journal article or chapter is being supplied by the British Library, you will receive an email at your Newman address containing a link to download your inter-library loan
    Here’s a help guide on how to download your article, when it has been emailed to you. If you are having problems accessing your download then please contact us at
  • You have 30 days to download your interlibrary loan after which the link will expire and you will have to request the item again. An additional request will use up another one of your annual quota and will take the usual time to process
  • Journal articles or chapters supplied by other libraries will be forwarded to your Newman e-mail address unless they are supplied to us in printed format. If supplied in printed format we will e-mail you to let you know it is available for you to collect


  • You will be e-mailed when your inter-library loan is available
  • Some books are supplied on the condition that they are not taken out of the library. If this is the case we will send you an e-mail when the item has arrived
  • Books which can be loaned will be issued for 3 weeks unless the library lending it to us has set a shorter lending period
  • Inter-library loans may be recalled by the lending library and so we may need to email you to ask you to return it earlier than the initial due date. Overdue fines will apply from the new due date
  • You should return inter-library loans to the Service Desk on the entry level of the library during library staffed hours, or if you can’t visit during staffed hours then please put the item into the returns box next to one of our self-service kiosks
  • Before your inter-library loan is due to be returned, you will receive up to two e-mail reminders
  • We will e-mail you if your inter-library loan becomes overdue
  • Inter-library loan fines are £2.50 per day
  • If your inter-library loan becomes overdue by 28 days we will need to replace the item for the lending library, so we will charge you the cost of replacing the item in addition to any overdue charges. The replacement cost may be high – the British Library’s standard charge is over £190.00 per item.


  • Renewals cannot be guaranteed as they depend on the library who lent the book to us – so be prepared to return it on the due date or even at short notice before the due date
  • We charge you £5.00 each time you renew an inter-library loan.
    Renewal charges will be added to your library account after a renewal has been confirmed by the library that lent us the item
  • You are limited to two renewals for each inter-library loan
  • It can take time to contact the lending library so please give us as much notice as possible to arrange a renewal for you
  • Unfortunately inter-library loans cannot be renewed on the self-service kiosks as they are not visible on the list of loans, however they are included in the total number of loans shown
  • Unfortunately inter-library loans cannot be renewed on My Account on the library catalogue, however you can see them listed under the Loans tab


Terms and conditions

Annual limits

There is a limit on the number of free requests in each academic year, which depends on your course if you are a student or whether you are a member of staff:

  • Undergraduates, PGCE - 5
  • Taught Masters (MA, MSc, MEd) – 10
  • Staff, Doctoral (PhD, EdD) and Research Masters (MPhil, MRes) – 20

You can request more inter-library loans but these will be charged at full cost. We will let you know the cost before we place the inter library loan order

Active limits

You can have up to five inter-library loan requests active in our system at any time. A request is active from when we place the order until either:

  • Journal articles or chapters are received or
  • An inter library loan book is returned or
  • A request is cancelled

If you have more than five inter-library loan requests which you want us to process at one time, we will prioritise journal article requests as these should be made available to you more quickly. If you wish us to prioritise other items please make this clear on your request.

Cancelling requests

We can cancel your initial request if you let us know before it is placed with the British Library, but not after the order has been placed. We normally process requests within two working days, so please email us at as soon as you can if you want to cancel

Fines and additional charges

  • Overdue fines for inter-library loans are £2.50 per day
  • There is a maximum fine limit for each overdue inter library loan of £50.00
  • Fines are higher than our standard library fines, because if we don’t return the books to the library who lent them to us on time, they may not lend to us in future. If you repeatedly return inter library loans late, this will put your use of this service at risk
  • The library pays for each inter-library loan we borrow on your behalf. Occasionally the charges are higher than the standard rate; if so we will ask you to pay the additional costs.


Lost, damaged and stolen items

  • You are responsible for damage to or loss of your inter-library loan items. Replacement costs will vary according to the charging policy of the supplying library, as a guide the British Library’s standard charge is over £190.00 per item. Any charges will be passed onto you in full.

Other services

British Library On Demand

If you need a document very quickly, for example, within 2 hours, you can register yourself with British Library On Demand to request it directly rather than using Newman library’s inter-library loan service. It is a chargeable service.

EThOS - Electronic Theses Online Service

If you need to access theses from other universities, use the EThOS - Electronic Theses Online Service; the EThOS help page is a good starting point.

Copyright Cleared requests for Moodle

Do you need to give your students access to an article or chapter from a book on Moodle, but the library doesn’t own a copy? If so, you need our scanning service.

You should complete a email scanning request form rather than make an interlibrary loan request.

Requests for scans of items we do not own are charged at cost and can be funded through your library book budget with appropriate agreement. Costs can be significant and vary from item to item due to the copyright fees. Please ask your Academic Service Librarian for any further information.

Need help with inter-library loans?

If you have any queries about using our Inter-Library Loans service, please ask at the Library Service Desk on the entrance level of the library, call us on 0121 476 1181 extension 1208 or email us at