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Library rules

Library rules

  1. All readers must firstly register at the Library Office. Any change of address must be notified to the Senior Library Assistant.
  2. Smoking and the consumption of food and drink in the Library are strictly prohibited at all times. (Bottled water is allowed) 
  3. Readers may bring a mobile telephone into the Library provided it is set to silent mode. However, mobile telephone conversations are NOT permitted. To prevent disturbance to other readers, calls must be answered outside of the Library. Readers should not run to the Library exit or speak on the telephone until they are outside. Text messaging is allowed.
  4. Readers are requested to keep silence in the Library. If using headphones while working the volume must be kept to a level that does not disturb other readers.
  5. No book may be removed from the Library unless it has been borrowed legitimately. Library readers are responsible for the safe keeping of any book borrowed. They may be asked to pay for the replacement of books lost or damaged. Books must not be taken out of Cambridge, except by undergraduates during the Christmas and Easter vacations.
  6. Undergraduates may borrow books for two weeks, subject to recall if required by another reader. All other readers may borrow books for the duration of the term or vacation, subject to recall if required by another reader. Part I and II texts may be borrowed overnight only during term or for the duration of the vacation. There is vacation borrowing for undergraduates during the Christmas and Easter vacations. Reminder and Overdue Notices will be sent to borrowers automatically via email. Periodicals and texts from the reference section may not be borrowed.
  7. Undergraduates may borrow up to four books. All other readers may borrow up to 12 books. A maximum of two Overnight Loan books can be borrowed by any reader at any one time.
  8. Reading places may not be reserved, but up to four books (except Overnight Loan books) or journal volumes may be reserved for three days if a completed reservation slip is left in them. These are distributed throughout the Library. Remove all notebooks, papers and personal belongings each day. The Library cannot accept responsibility for loss or damage of personal property.


Security alarm and CCTV monitors

An RFID security system is in operation in the Balfour Library, with sensors by the exit. An alarm will sound if a book or journal is attempted to be removed from the Library without being desensitised appropriately.

Readers fitted with pacemakers shouldn't be affected by the security sensors, but if you are in any doubt, please go to Reception and ask them to contact the Senior Library Assistant in the Library Office, who will come and speak to you.

If the alarm sounds upon your exit, and you are in the Library out of hours, please check that you don't have any Library stock on you. If not, walk back and away from the sensors, and try again.

If it goes off again and you see no reason for the alarm to sound, please leave the Library and report the incident to the Senior Library Assistant the next day.

CCTV cameras are also in operation in the Library 24 hours a day and the footage recorded is monitored daily.