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Visiting the library

Visiting the library

Who can use the library?

The library is open to all students, researchers and staff of the University of Cambridge, the wider polar research community and anybody wishing to know more about the polar regions. If you are visiting for the library for the first time in this academic year, please complete the short registration form.

New user registration form

For academic visitors planning a visit of two or more weeks, please write in the first instance to the Director of SPRI to apply to be a Visiting Scholar.

Opening hours

The library is currently open for visitors Monday to Friday from 9:00 – 13:00, and 14:00 - 17:00.

We are closed in the period between Christmas and New Year and on bank holidays.


Step-free access into the Institute is available using the entrance at the side of the building next to the car park. There is lift access to library space on the first and second floors of the building. We will always consider ways that we can best serve any library user so please contact us if you have any special requirements or about how we can make your visit more enjoyable.

Study desks

There are 8 individual study desks and 3 desks which can be used for group study. For visitors looking for a quiet study space there is the option to book a desk before your visit. The bookable desk is located in the Rotunda on Level 2. If you cannot keep your booking, please use the link in your booking confirmation email to cancel your place and enable somebody else to use it.

Book a study desk

Library regulations

We ask all library users to abide by the library regulations to ensure that the Polar Library remains a pleasant and safe study environment and that the collections are appropriately conserved.