Centre for Research Collections
The Centre for Research Collections (CRC) is the main space for anyone using the University of Edinburgh’s cultural and heritage collections.
Following the Main Library’s designation as an essential research lab for the humanities, the Centre for Research Collections has been asked to lead on the return to library services on campus. It was recognised that the CRC already has in place easily adaptable handling procedures, safety equipment and staff expertise on providing safe access to collections that will be deployed to create a safe research environment.
Face-to-face services at the CRC have now resumed. Please read the guidance in the drop-down menu below carefully.
Following government advice, face-to-face services at the St Cecilia's Hall, School of Scottish Studies Archives & Library, and the University Collections Facility remain closed at this time. Please note, most staff remain working from home and do not have access to collections.
- We are still monitoring our email enquiries (firstname.lastname@example.org) and, where possible, will direct users to relevant online resources.
- For up to date information about the University of Edinburgh's response to COVID-19 please see the webpages.
- Information about the impact of COVID-19 on wider library services are available on a dedicated webpage.
Please note that we will have reduced capacity due to social distancing measures, and access will be by appointment only. Please read the following information carefully:
Appointments will be subject to availability of spaces in the CRC Reading Room, with priority given to University of Edinburgh students and researchers.
Your appointment is for one person only - you must not bring anyone else with you to the building.
Requests for appointments should be made at least 1 week in advance. Same-day requests will not be possible.
Please let us know if you have any additional access requirements.
Opening hours will be 11:00 – 15:00 Monday to Friday (we hope to expand our opening hours at a later date).
Priority will be given to time-limited research access requirements – if your needs are not urgent please consider waiting until a later date to make a request.
On the day of your appointment please report to the reception desk at the main entrance of the Main Library on George Square. A member of staff will allow you in to the building and direct you to the 6th floor. Please note the rest of the library will not be available for access.
If you would like to discuss options for delivering teaching with collections in the 20/21 academic year, please email us at email@example.com.
The CRC and Main Library will have enhanced hygiene measures in place to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission. These include:
Enhanced cleaning schedules
72hr quarantining of collection materials and book supports / weights
Social distancing signage and routes through the building
Additional regulations for users in the CRC Reading Room, including hand hygiene
Hand sanitiser stations in addition to hand washing facilities
The University is following the guidance provided by Health Protection Scotland. If you have any specific questions, please do ask these at the time of making your request for access.
We encourage you to wear your own face covering during your visit.
Toilets will be available as usual, with additional hygiene measures in place. However, some facilities will not be available in order to reduce the risk of transmission. These include:
Open Access PCs: if you require online access, please ensure that you bring your own laptop or tablet (these may be taken in to the Reading Room). Alternatively, staff will be available to search on your behalf, but using your own device is recommended.
Library Café: the café will be closed during this initial opening period. There are many takeaway food and beverage retailers close to the library. Food may not be consumed in the building, but bottled drinks may be used in the CRC reception area. There is also a water fountain – please bring your own water bottle.
Collecting Covid-19 Initiative
Overview of Collections & Digital Images
Search the Collections
The Sir Charles Lyell Collection
Teaching and Seminar Facilities
Services (including Digitisation)
Digital Scholarship Centre