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The Library is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week except for approximately one week at Christmas.

The Library is open to all current Lucy Cavendish College students and other Members of College. Members of other University of Cambridge colleges and external researchers may make an appointment with the Librarian to consult material here. For further details please read our Access Policy.

Welcome to all our new and returning students.  It's great to see so many of you back in the Library this week – we’ve certainly missed you over the summer!
A few things to make you aware, which we hope will help you to make best use of the Library and its facilities of as term gets underway.

Book recommendations
We’ve been placing lots of orders for new books but if there are any books on your reading lists which we don’t have, particularly core texts, please email the details to and we'll do our best to purchase them or point you to a copy elsewhere in the University. 

Room bookings
We now have an additional space for you to book if you need to work with Lucy colleagues – Group Study Room 2 is adjacent to Group Study Room 1 and you can book it via the online form in the same way as all our other bookable spaces. See the section below “Studying in the Library and Bookable Spaces” for details of facilities and a link to the form.

Display of study skills books
Gill has put together a display of some of our study skills titles which you can find on top of the book drop.  Please do come and take a look. They’re all available to borrow in the usual way.

We have a number of lockers for storing personal belongings in the Library.  If you would like one, come and see us and we can allocate one to you for the duration of your course.

Assistive equipment
We have a selection of assistive equipment to help you while you work here – everything from coloured overlays, lumbar supports, laptop and book stands, to fidget toys, a magnifying reader and more! All the equipment is in the foyer on the shelves opposite the self-service machine. Just help yourself and return the items to the shelves once you’ve finished working for the day.

Graphic novels
We have been busy over the summer buying for our collection of graphic novels and we now have well over 100 titles in the collection in the top room of the Library. The novels are all borrowable in the usual way.

Elevenses and Threeses
Last but certainly not least, don't forget to join us in the foyer for a free hot drink and biscuits every Thursday at 11am and every Tuesday at 3pm.  It's a good opportunity to take a well-earned break from your studies and to get to know other members of college.  See you there!

Very best wishes for the start of the new academic year and if you have any questions at all remember, just ask!

Suzanne, Amanda and Gill

The Library has a large informal Foyer area, where you can work, relax, print, issue books to your account, and join us for ‘elevenses’ and threeses’Library staff are based here, and happy to answer any of your questions.

The three Reading Rooms and the Founders Room on the second floor are all quiet study spaces and are all “hotdesks”. This means you can leave your belongings in situ temporarily for up to 2 hours – just fill out one of the forms on the desk so we know you will be back. If you will be away longer than 2 hours, please clear the space for others to use.

If you want to work in a group, with a colleague, or make a zoom call etc., you can use the Foyer or one of our several bookable spaces.

Book a space

If you have any questions please contact





Fully accessible?

Additional information

Barbara Dyer Room


PC; projector and screen; flip chart/whiteboard; dry-wipe pens; table and chairs; power sockets

LGF via west stairs *

Access is via stairs.

Lift access available when Group Study Room 1 is free: check with staff

These rooms may be combined into one larger space with a capacity of 20. Book both rooms if you require the larger space & alert of the day/time of your booking and attendee numbers so the screen can be folded back & the room set up.

Group Study Room 1


Large display screen; Practical Skills collection; flip chart/whiteboard; dry-wipe pens; table and chairs; power sockets

LGF via central stairs

Yes: via lift or stairs

Group Study Room 2


Whiteboard and dry-wipe pens; table and chairs; power sockets

LGF via central stairs

Yes: via lift or stairs


Careers and Enterprise Hub


Videoconferencing system; 66” interactive touchscreen monitor; whiteboard camera; large & small whiteboard; dry-wipe write-on tables; dry-wipe pens; flipchart; power sockets

LGF via central stairs

Yes: via lift or stairs


Breakout Room


Large whiteboard and dry-wipe pens; table and chairs; power sockets

LGF via west stairs *

Access is via stairs.

Lift access available when Group Study Room 1 is free: check with staff

Access is via the entrance to the Barbara Dyer Room.

Videoconference Booth


Sound-proofed booth for Zoom calls; includes small built-in desk and seat, power socket, light and ventilation

LGF via central stairs

Yes: via lift or stairs


All spaces have access to WiFi/Eduroam

* Access via the west stairs: follow the signs to the door at the back of the ground floor reading room and take the stairs to the lower ground floor. The study rooms are through the door at the bottom of the stairs. Tap your card to gain access.

Reading Room Study Spaces Desks
Careers and Enterprise Hub Videoconferencing booth Barbara Dyer Room

We’re usually to be found in the Library foyer (and around the Library) from 9:00 am until 5:00 pm Monday to Friday. Do come and see us then if you have any questions. 

We’re here to help!

We'll also respond to any queries you have, via email or by phone:


Suzanne Tonkin, Librarian 
Tel: 01223 (3)32183


Amanda Hawkes

Amanda Hawkes, Assistant Librarian
Tel: 01223 (7)66984 




Gill Saxon

Gill Saxon, Library Assistant
Tel: 01223 (7)66984


Maximising your Academic Potential (MAP)

Study skills and strategies are paramount to your success at Cambridge. More than that, they help you to develop vital life and work skills such as time management, effective note-taking and delivering presentations.

We want you to get the most out of your academic studies and ultimately the best results you can on your chosen Tripos or Masters course. So we run a special programme, open to all our undergraduate and graduate students, called “Maximise your Academic Potential” which focuses on the skills, techniques, and approaches you need to perform really well academically. The sessions vary each term as they follow round the pattern of the academic year. Please let us know if there are other courses you would like us to run.

Click here to find out more about study skills

Check the calendar to view course dates and book

A new pilot resource developed for libraries across the collegiate university provides a single listing of the training - lectures/workshops/1-2-1/asynchronous/in-person - sessions which library staff are involved in for supporting students. Updates to the content included in the list are taking place regularly. The list contains content for both Undergraduate and Postgraduate students.

Library Study Skills Catalogue

Cambridge University Libraries use a shared catalogue, iDiscover which will enable you to find the books and resources you need. Through iDiscover you can search for books in the Lucy Library, as well as in Faculty and Departmental Libraries. You can also access e-books, journal articles, databases and other resources. 

You can also use iDiscover to check your Library account, noting which books you have on loan from libraries across Cambridge University.


Finding books in Lucy Library

Watch our short video on how to search for items in your reading list in iDiscover below:



The library uses the Dewey Decimal Classification system, and you will see the classmark for each book on the spine label of the book on the shelf. This number is shown on the Library catalogue, iDiscover, to help you locate the book, for instance:

Finding books

In practice, this means you can find books for your courses in the following areas of the Library: 

Where are my books

Undergraduates, postgraduates, Fellows and staff at Lucy can borrow books from the Library. Undergraduates can borrow up to 15 books at any time, and postgraduates can borrow up to 20 books. You will have a further borrowing allowances at each of the other Cambridge Libraries you use. 


Cambridge University Libraries have an automatic renewal system in place, which means books will automatically renew unless a request has been placed for the book you have on loan. In that instance, you will need to return the book to the Library. 

Borrowing a Book

Borrow 1 Borrow Borrow

Books are borrowed via the self issue machine in the Library foyer. You just need to scan the barcode on the back of your Camcard and the barcode on the front of the book.

Book returns

Please return books via the book returns box in the Library foyer.



There are no fines in operation at Lucy Library.


If the book you want is on loan to someone else, you can place a request for it via iDiscover. The book loan will not be renewed, the borrower will return the book to the Library and you will be notified when the book is available. 

Placing a recall

placing a request in IDiscover

In iDiscover, click on 'My Library Account' in the top navigation bar and Select the ‘log in with Raven’ option.

  • Find the book you want by searching iDiscover, requesting is done from the detailed results page in iDiscover.
  • To get to the results page: look at the full record by clicking on the title, Click on the location that you want, then click on ‘Request’ next to its details.

Requested books are held for 5 days at the reserved books shelf in the Library foyer. We will email you when the book is returned and is ready to collect.

Lost books

If you think you may have lost a book then please contact us to discuss options for replacing the book.

When you first arrive at College we will take you on a tour of the Library and take you through the basics of using the Library and the services available here.  You can see a short film on finding your way around the Library here:   



Our top tips for making the most of your College Library are:

Ask us!  You’ll find our offices in the Library foyer. Drop in, call 01223 332183/ 766984 or email anytime with your questions. We’re here to help! Alternatively, bring your Library and basic IT enquiries to the Library Helpdesk on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2 pm to 4 pm when we will be standing by to solve your information problems!

Give us your feedback and book recommendations. Add your comments and suggestions to the Feedback Wall found in the foyer and help us to continue developing and improving your Library for you. If we don’t have a book you need or it’s already out on loan, tell us! We can often buy a copy or find an alternative source.

Using the Library is not just about books! The university has access to over a million ebooks, as well as access to journals and databases through the University’s catalogue iDiscover. 

We also have a range of anatomical models: skulls, hand, brain, forearm, which are often used by medical students. If you need a spare brain or a hand, just ask. 

Brain hand

The Barbara Dyer Room  has a range of practical resources, with support for disciplines that involve hands-on teaching. The collection holds such varied items as a cutting mat and light box for Architecture students, molecular model kits for Natural Sciences students, and even a kit to help our Medics and Vets practice their handwashing. The Library also holds a collection of skeletons and bones which can be used for anatomical, archaeological and other studies, by appointment.

The Careers and Enterprise Hub offers a range of facilities, such as: a videoconferencing system, screen-sharing software, visualiser, interactive touchscreen monitor, large write on tables and a whiteboard. Just by the Hub there is a  “Zoom booth” – soundproofed space to allow students to conduct Zoom calls privately. 

The Library has a range of ways to support you. 

Elevenses & Threeses

Take a break, relax and get to know other members of College other a free hot drink and biscuits. Join us in the Library foyer for Elevenses on Thursdays at 11am and Threeses on Tuesdays at 3pm

Art & Photography Competition

Each year, ahead of Easter term, we hold our Art & Photography competition, open to all members of the College. Enter and you could win a voucher and have your artwork displayed in the Library. 

Your Library Loves You / Love Your Library

Every year, around Valentine’s Day, we have a week of activities promoting the Library and the support you can get here. In recent years we’ve had Library Haiku, love and break up letters, displays and special elevenses and threeses. 


Elevenses & Threeses
All College members welcome.
See you there!


Photo comp

Art & Photography

2018 prizewinner
Sarah Gull ‘Hymn to Books'



Your Library Loves You / Love Your Library
A haiku competition entry


Well-being Collection

We also have a Well-being collection of books, which can be found in the basement, opposite the Library Lounge.

This collection was developed in partnership with the student union. If there’s anything you think we should buy then just let us know. 

Lucy Cavendish College has got a welfare and well-being program run by our Student Welfar Advisor, Maria Dias. Her main aim is to help each student enjoy making the most of their time with us and to develop life skills that they continue to use and evolve after College.

Students and staff can contact her about any welfare issue at any stage via

Make the most of other Libraries and resources  - There are over 100 libraries in Cambridge. Go to the Cambridge Libraries Gateway here for further information and help including:

Cambridge Libraries Directory details each library’s opening hours, who can use them, the subjects they cover and contact details.

Cambridge LibGuides provides online help for using libraries, electronic resources and carrying out research.

Cambridge Lib Answers - an online service for finding answers to your queries about library resources, services and spaces.

CamGuides is a set of resources for students beginning undergraduate, or taught Master's degrees at Cambridge.

CamGuides is designed to help students prepare for their studies in Cambridge, regardless of their subject or College, and has some really useful information for you at whatever stage of your study. It focuses on some of the academic and information practices and skills that students commonly use, or require, for their degrees.

Spacefinder is a useful tool to help you find a study space that suits you. It contains key information about faculty and departmental library and UL opening hours, space booking and access arrangements.


Cambridge University Library - Photo by Sir Cam
Cambridge University Library - Photo by Sir Cam


Wifi is available throughout the Library, for you to access with your own device. Networked PCs and an Apple Mac computer offer a range of software, teaching materials and networked storage space are located in the Foyer and reading rooms. 

The Library has a Multi Function Device (MFD) in the Library foyer, where you can carry out all your printing, scanning, and photocopying. 

You will need to top up your printing balance, which you can do at the Porter’s Lodge, or online via DS-Print

You can find out more about how you can set up your laptop and find out more about College IT support here

Mind the Gap!

Need a book or resource we don't currently have?  Already out on loan?  Don't panic! 

Email us the details or request items already on loan via iDiscover 

We'll do our best to order a copy or help you find an alternative, and we'll email you when items are ready to collect.

Library’s Collection Development Policy


We don’t have lots of rules here, but please help us to maintain a safe, clean and comfortable working environment by following these simple rules:

  • The Library and its facilities are for the use of Lucy Cavendish College members only. 

  • Food is not allowed in the reading rooms or group study room but can be eaten in the Library foyer.

  • Drinks in covered cups or containers can be taken into the reading rooms but drinks in open mugs or cups are only allowed in the Library foyer.

  • Keep noise to a minimum and do not use mobile phones in the reading rooms or in the stairwells. 

  • If you want to continue to use books, place a pink slip in the book and you can leave them in the shelves next to each individual study space, to clear the desktop for others to use.

  • Check items out using the self-issue machine in the foyer before removing them from the Library. If you're unable to use the computer for any reason please complete a paper borrowing slip instead.

  • Return Library items promptly, especially if they have been recalled by another student.

  • If you lose or mark any Library items the replacement cost may be charged to your College bill. Marking items includes underlining, highlighting or inserting post-it notes. If you discover any markings please let us know.