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Visiting York Minster Library and Archives

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Opening times

Monday – Thursday: 09.30am – 12.30pm, 1.30pm – 4.30pm

Lunchtimes, Fridays, weekends and Bank Holidays: closed

You may visit without appointment to browse or borrow books, use the Reading Room as a quiet study space and view a selection of historic books on display.

If you are visiting, please use the intercom to the left of the door to gain access as the main door will be locked.


Appointments for Special Collections and Archives

Monday – Wednesday: 09.30am – 12.30pm and 1.30pm – 4.30pm

No appointments on Thursdays or Fridays.

You must make a prior appointment to see material from Library Special Collections or Archives (retrieval of items is not possible without advance notice).

The Library and Archives are located in the Old Palace, behind York Minster, across Dean’s Park.

Enquiries email collections@yorkminster.org or telephone (01904) 557250.

Booking an appointment

If you already know which item or items you require then you can book directly using our online form:

You should limit your requests to 6 items per session (i.e. up to 12 items if you have booked two appointments). You will receive an automated response initially, and staff will confirm your booking by email within two working days. There will be a fee to access archival resources for visitors outside of the University of York (£10.50 for general visitors, payable by card on arrival: reduced fees for external students apply).


Discovering our collections 

You can search for library items via YorSearch the University of York catalogue.

Much of our collection of archives and artefacts is searchable via our own online catalogue. If you are able to visit but unable to find what you are looking for in the catalogue, please let us know at collections@yorkminster.org  and we may recommend that you book an appointment to consult some of our paper catalogues that have not been added to the online catalogue yet.

What to expect on your visit

Research room guidelines will apply for the security of the collection: you will be asked, for example, to leave coats and bags in a locker on arrival, and only take pencils, paper and electronic devices into the Reading Room

Photography is permitted in the Reading Room, but you must purchase a day permit from a member of staff on duty (£10.00)

Two Wifi networks are available: Eduroam for members of participating universities (including University of York) and CityConnect which is available to all

University of York staff and students: the Minster Library does not have bookable IT or printing facilities. Photography charges still apply but borrowing is free.

Non-University library members will be able to arrange loan collection and returns by email

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