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More information about booking a visit to view our documents

Use this service to book a visit to view our documents. Visitors without a booking will not be able to enter the building.

Book a visit to view our documents

Which documents can I see?

Choose between a visit with a:

  • standard advance document order (up to 12 documents plus three reserves) – a 1-day visit.
  • bulk advance document order (if you want to see 20-40 documents all from the same series). Your booking will be valid for 2 consecutive days.

See our opening times.

How do I book?

Booking a visit to view our documents is a five-step online process:

  1. Select a date
  2. Enter your details
  3. Your visit details
  4. Order documents: confirm your booking
  5. Order complete

If you do not have your document references to hand, you can still complete Steps 1-3 to secure your date of visit, then return at a later stage to complete Steps 4-5. You can return to Steps 4-5 up to 5 working days before your visit date.

Use Discovery, our catalogue, to gather your document references.

You will need a reader’s ticket (if you don’t have one you can register for one to make a provisional booking.

Terms of booking

New slots for booking will be made available every day.

Each booking is for one person only on a first-come, first-served basis – you will not be able to bring anyone with you, unless they book a visit themselves or have a duty of care.

There is a reasonable limit of any two types of bookings (standard or bulk) in 28 days. Two bookings cannot be made for the same date.

Please be thoughtful and considerate of others when you book – we may cancel your booking if you exceed our reasonable limit of two bookings in 4 weeks.

Access requirements

All seats in our reading rooms are accessible. There is a lift in the building.

Read more information about the access we provide.

Research requests

We are currently unable to provide many of our usual reading room services, including research advice and copying. You can request library materials, camera stands, microfilm/fiche or finding/preservation aids that are normally available on self-service. We cannot guarantee that all of the research materials your request will be available for your visit.

Computer access will be available to all visitors with a confirmed booking.

Camera stands

Camera stands will be available to each visitor in the document reading room. Visitors who want to use a camera stand in the Map and large document reading room should request a camera stand using the provisional booking form.

Prepare for your visit

Find out about what you can expect when you visit.