Information Services

Retired members of staff

If you have retired from the University of Edinburgh then you are still entitled to borrowing rights at the University libraries.

Library Membership

University of Edinburgh Libraries are fully open to all categories of external membership.

If you wish to join or renew your existing membership, please  e-mail us at (Please state you wish to join/renew and include in your email your name,  category of visitor and existing card reference number starting ‘200..’ if applicable). 

We will reply to you with important information for access within a maximum of 7 days. Please wait for our reply before visiting our libraries.*

*We may not be able to process your membership if you do not follow these steps.*





Membership Notes
External borrower Free. Membership lasts for 3 years.

What do I need to bring?

Membership Documentation
External borrower Photographic ID, proof of address* plus For those over 66 years of age, proof of UoE employment. If between 55 and 65 years of age, proof of UoE pension.

*Proof of address must be dated within the last 3 months.

If you are still doing work for the University then the college, school or unit you are working for may choose to issue you with a Visitor card through the Visitor Registration System (VRS). This would give you access to library buildings and may give you some borrowing rights.

What does my card entitle me to?

Details of what your card entitles you to at the University Library can be found on the following page.

What does my card entitle me to?


Your library card can be used in the Main Library and all site libraries. Access to departmental or class libraries is not available.

Library opening hours

Replacement cards (lost, stolen or expired)

If your external borrower's card is lost, stolen or damaged you can get it replaced with an online payment of £10. Please email for more details.

If your card expires you must apply for a new one. Please email and we will send you all the relevant information for a replacement. All required documentation must be provided. 


Reference only access

If you are not wishing to borrow items from the library then you can join the library as a reference user (consultation only). This would require you to join as a member of the public.

Joining the library as member of the public

Privacy Notice for Library Self-Registration

This privacy notice explains what personal information the University holds about those joining as library members. It explains why we hold this information, what we do with it, how long we keep it for and if we share it with third parties.

Privacy Notice for Library Self-Registration