The Library Enquiry Service is staffed by experienced, professional librarians during Library opening hours.
Library guides offering further information on the services and facilities we offer can be downloaded from this page.
Printing and photocopying
There are 3 photocopiers on the main floor of the Library. Photocopies are made using a photocopying card which is available from the enquiry desk and costs 80p. Credit can be added to the photocopying card with a debit/credit card at the enquiry desk or with cash at the top-up point in the centre of the Library. The charge per page is 8p.
Copying is permitted for the statutory exemptions of judicial proceedings and private study. The Library also has a CLA license so copying is permitted for commercial purposes, within the conditions set out by the license.
Printing from the 9 networked PCs on the main floor of the Library is available using a photocopying card. The charge is 5p per page.
The Library is primarily for reference only. However, some textbooks may be borrowed overnight or for the weekend after 6 pm to be returned by 9.30 am. Note that on those weekends when the Library is open on Saturday, weekend borrowing is not available on Friday evenings – books may only be borrowed after 4.45 pm on Saturday for the remainder of the weekend. Looseleafs, law reports and journals cannot be borrowed and overnight loans are limited to 4 books per person.
If you require more than 50 pages of photocopying (and such copying would not be in breach of copyright) you may take books back to chambers for up to two hours.
Longer loans of limited categories of non-current textbooks are allowed. Full details of the borrowing arrangements are on the noticeboard.
The above borrowing facilities are only available to barristers who are members of the Inn or who have chambers in the Inn and their pupils.
Internet access is freely available for both personal use and legal research on nine PCs in the library.
Wi-fi access is available for readers with their own laptops and also on the three stand-alone PCs in the upper gallery in the Library. This is for general internet and email usage – there is no access to the Library’s subscription databases or networked services. Ask at the desk for the security password to access it for the first time (your laptop will save the password for future use). If you want to use one of the stand-alone PCs, book at the enquiry desk first.
Three PCs for word-processing are available on the upper gallery of the Library. Sessions of up to an hour and a half can be booked on the day at the desk or by telephone. Printing is available using a photocopying card and costs 5p per page.
The Library subscribes to an extensive range of on-line databases. Other than the Catalogue, these cannot be accessed remotely. The main ones are:
The full text of a wide range of law reports and unreported cases (back to 1980), materials from legislation in force as amended, Halsburys Laws, some journals and many news sources. As well as full text case law coverage, included are All England Direct, which provides summaries of recent unreported cases, and Case Search, which provides digests of cases from the earliest times to the present, based on data from the 100-plus volumes of The Digest.
Combines the data from Current Law and the Legal Journals Index with the full text of law reports (including the pre-1865 English Report), unreported cases, journals and legislation as amended.
This provides summaries of reported and unreported cases, updated daily, with links to the full text of transcripts. Now available via the Westlaw platform.
Justis Statutes and SIs
The full text of statutes from 1235, as enacted whether repealed or in force, and SIs likewise from 1948.
Electronic Immigration Network
The full text of Immigration Appeal Tribunal decisions and other immigration materials.
A fully searchable archive of back runs of academic law journals – the bulk American law reviews, but with a number of English, Commonwealth and international titles.
The Incorporated Council of Law Reporting have their own online service providing the full text of The Law Reports, the Weekly Law Reports and their other series. The reports will continue to be available on Westlaw and Lexis, but the ICLR service also includes data from the “Red Indexes”, covering other leading series. ICLR Online is also a handy way of focussing a search just on leading authorities. PDFs of the printed reports are provided.
The library has access to the parliamentary database that has been prepared by the House of Commons Library since 1979.
Texts on CD-ROM
Holdings include Butterworths Taxation Service (which incorporates the full Inland Revenue Manuals), and the company law services from CCH and Tolley.
Library research guides
Anyone trying to track superseded versions of the Government’s advice during the COVID-19 pandemic will have encountered one of the major bugbears of internet research – how to find copies of superseded official advice. With this in mind, the Library has produced a guide on those websites which archive material which has been freely published on the web and then withdrawn.