Visiting the Cadbury Research Library

Covid-19 re-opening

The Cadbury Research Library will reopen on Monday 14 September 2020, initially to allow our staff time to fulfil reprographics orders and undertake enhanced enquiries.

We will reopen our Reading Room, for University of Birmingham staff and students only, on Monday 5 October 2020. If you would like to visit, please read the guidance below carefully.

Non-UoB researchers

At present we are unable to provide access to any researchers who are not current students or staff at the University of Birmingham. Our phased reopening plans are heavily focused on public health guidance and significantly reduced capacity in our Reading Room. As such, our initial offer – for the Autumn Term 2020 - provides controlled access for our own staff and students.

We will regularly review our service offer and we will endeavour to provide access to non-UoB researchers as soon as we feel it is safe to do so.

Whilst we are unable to offer physical appointments for non-UoB researchers, we are happy to provide the following:

Health and Safety

The Cadbury Research Library will have enhanced hygiene measures in place to reduce the risk of Covid-19 transmission. These include:

  • Enhanced cleaning schedules
  • 72 hours quarantining of collection materials and book supports/weights
  • Social distancing signage throughout the building
  • Additional regulations for users in the CRL Reading Room, including hand hygiene
  • Hand sanitiser stations in addition to hand washing facilities

Researchers will be required to wear their own face covering during their visit. If you have any specific questions, please ask these at the time of making your request for access.

Access to the Cadbury Research Library

We will have significantly reduced capacity due to social distancing measures. All access, for UoB staff and students, will be by appointment only:

  • Requests should be made to:
  • Appointments will be subject to availability of spaces in the CRL Reading Room
  • Your appointment will be for one person only. You must not bring anyone else with you
  • Requests for appointments should be made at least one week in advance
  • All researchers must complete an online Canvas course prior to visiting the CRL for the first time since our Covid-19 reopening
  • All researchers must read, and agree to, our Coronavirus Researcher Charter
  • 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
  • Researchers will be given a staggered arrival time and departure time
  • 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 wait at the rear entrance to the Muirhead Tower (near to the undercroft car park). A member of staff will meet you at this entrance at your designated arrival time. If you cannot make your agreed time, please let us know as soon as possible.
  • Please note that researchers should not access the Muirhead Tower via an alternative entrance
  • All material will need to be pre-ordered. A maximum of 6 archive boxes, and/or 10 rare books, can be retrieved in advance for one researcher each day.

Pre-Arrival Registration (Required)

Once your appointment has been confirmed, you will be sent an ‘Access to Archives’ form and our Coronavirus Researcher Charter. This is for all users, even those who have visited before. Please complete this paperwork and, ideally, return to us by email or bring with you on the day.


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). Alternative, staff will be available to search on your behalf, but using your own device is recommended.
  • Microfilms: access to microfilm surrogates will not be possible. Researchers will be advised of alternatives (such as online content and, in some cases, permission to view originals).
  • All paper catalogues, resource guides and reference books. These items should only be handled by staff.


If you would like to discuss options for delivering virtual teaching with our collections during the 2020-2021 academic year, please email us at


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