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Cambridge LibGuides

Find out more about our library services, facilities and resources

Selwyn College Library: Using the Bartlam Library

Welcome to the Bartlam Library

Opening hours during term are 7am to 2am and during the vacation are 7am to midnight. Your University Card will permit you access between 7am and 1.45am (11.45pm during the vacation), so do check the time if you are aiming for an early start and are unable to get in.

There are currently 68 seats available across the two floors of the library, plus two study rooms. There is no need to book a space, but you are able to book the two study rooms. Please wear a face covering if you can, especially whilst interacting with other people.

You will find books on both floors of the library, and a self-service kiosk for you to borrow and return books and DVDs on the ground and first floors.

Library staff will be continuing to work on relocating sections of the book collection, and you may find that individual desks are occasionally reserved for staff use. If you need help finding books, please ask or send us an email.

There is more equipment and furniture to come, and we will aim to give you as much notice as possible on any work being undertaken or any closures required.

If you haven't used the library yet, please book a familiarisation visit so we can give you a quick safety introduction to the new space. Email the library with suggested days and times the would suit you and we will let you know when is possible.

How to get to the Bartlam Library

The Bartlam Library building is on the Grange Road side of Ann's Court, near the corner with West Road.

The library entrance is on the east side of the building, facing into Ann's Court, at the base of the tower.

How to get in (card access)

The Bartlam Library has card access, so you will need your University Card with you to get into the building. (You won't need to use your late key.)

The first time you use the card reader, you may need to hold your card against it until the flickering blue light turns steady green and the door opens. Subsequently, you will only need to hold the card briefly against the reader.

Your card will give you access to the building between 7am and 1.45am each day.

To leave the building, press the exit button to the right of the door.

Ground floor lobby

The ground floor lobby contains a book returns box and a self-service borrowing/returns kiosk.

There is a lift and stairs to the first and second floors.

The exit button to open the front door is to the right of the door as you face it.


There is a lift available for you to access the two floors of the library.

The call button and the alert button are to the left of the lift as you face it. The green alert button sends an alert to the Porters' Lodge and will summon assistance when pressed.

Should you press the alert button accidentally, you can press it again to cancel the alert.

Height-adjustable desks

There are three height-adjustable desks in the library. One on the first floor (east wall, overlooking the terrace), one in the computer room, and one on the second floor (north wall, near Study Room One).

These desks can be raised and lowered using the up and down arrow buttons on the front of the desk, towards the left.

If there are issues with any of the desks in the library, please use the maintenance reporting form or email the library.

Desk lamps

The desk lamps are touch operated, one touch on and off.

If there are issues with any of the lights in the library, please use the maintenance reporting form or email the library.


There are automated windows to help control the temperature in the library, and manual windows if you want to let in extra air. On the second floor, the skylight windows can also be opened.

On both floors, there are roller blinds to cover the lower, larger windows. There are electric blinds for the skylight.

In order to meet our current requirements for opening safely, the automated windows should remain open during opening hours.

Please note that the automated windows will close when it rains and then reopen when it stops. We are aware that this can be quite noisy during spells of showery rain, and are investigating options, though it appears this function cannot be overridden.

First Floor

On the first floor, there are 18 seats available, with an additional 4 in the computer room. These are located at:

  • 6 window desks, including 1 height-adjustable desk;
  • 2 larger desks with 6 seats available on each;
  • 4 PCs in the computer room, including 1 height-adjustable desk.

There are power points (plug and USB) at each of the desks, on the front of the desk.

There are 4 toilets, including 1 accessible toilet, on this floor.

There are 4 MCS PCs available in the computer room, together with the printer/copier/scanner and a comb binder.

There is tap water available in the common room.

The majority of the book collection is on the first floor.

Floor plan of the Bartlam Library first floor

Second Floor

On the second floor, in the Donald Welbourn Reading Room, there are 46 seats available. These are located at:

  • 13 window desks, including 1 height-adjustable desk;
  • 6 larger desks.

Chairs are arranged to indicate available seat locations. There are also two bookable study rooms.

There are power points (plug and USB) at each of the desks, on the front of the desk. In the study rooms, there are sockets on the walls.

The coffee tables will have armchairs arranged around them later in the year.

There are 2 toilets on this floor.

The books on this floor are mostly less-well-used and reference books.

Second Floor: Study Rooms One and Two

There are two study rooms on the second floor.

These rooms are usually bookable between 8am and 10pm each day, up to a week in advance.

Please note: during Michaelmas and Lent Terms, whilst supervision rooms are in shorter supply than usual, these rooms may be booked for supervisions and unavailable for general booking. This will be indicated in the booking calendar.

There is a standing (wheelable) flipchart / whiteboard in each room. There are limited supplies for each, but please do bring your own flipchart paper if you plan to make extensive use of it (A1 size).

Please remember to open a window if you are using one of these rooms and to leave it open when you leave the room.

Floorplan of the Bartlam Library second floor

Watch this space

We may need to make changes to the layout of the seating and the number of seats available, and we will update this guide accordingly. If there are any major changes, we will also advertise them directly.

You may also find changes to other facilities, as we monitor feedback and usage of the space.

Access information

University Card entry with an intercom to the library office and the Porters' Lodge.

Ground floor entrance lobby with a lift and stairs to the first and second floors.

Accessible toilet on the first floor.

Three height-adjustable desks (two on the first floor, one on the second).

Emergency procedures

If the fire alarm sounds, leave by the nearest exit. Make your way to the ground floor via the main staircase or the emergency staircase.

The assembly point is on Ann's Court lawn.

There is an emergency staircase in the southwest corner of the building (shown in green with the emergency exit symbol on the floorplan). The emergency exit door is on the left when you reach the ground floor.

On the main staircase, the emergency exit door is on the right when you reach the ground floor.


The Bartlam Library is not yet fully furnished, with other furniture and equipment due to arrive at various points throughout the academic year. We would be grateful for your feedback on any aspect of the building, and will respond to any suggestions. You can share your feedback with the JCR or MCR or directly with us (all feedback will be collated).

If there is an urgent problem whilst you are in the building, please contact the Porters' Lodge by phone (01223 335846) or by email.

The Bartlam Library is open from 7am until 2am during term and from 7am until midnight during the vacation.

Library staff are working in the library and from home. If you have an enquiry of any kind, please email the library and we will get back to you as soon as we are able.

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