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Special Collections Research Centre

Summer projects plans

There are a number of projects taking place during Summer 2021 to improve the Brotherton Library.

Unfortunately, this means that from 7 June, the Brotherton Library will close on weekdays until 5pm whilst the most noisy and disruptive work happens. The Main Building will open on Monday to Thursday 5–8pm and on Saturdays 10am–5pm. There will be no access to the West Building and areas of the Main Building may be restricted by the project work. These restricted opening hours will continue until the start of the new academic year.

The most significant work is the Bedford project to extend and refurbish our Special Collections Research Centre. The other projects are to upgrade the West Building link corridor, renew the main round reading room parquet flooring and ongoing work to reorganise the collections.

Project milestones

These are the key milestone dates in the project plans:

  • Special Collections staff prepare the research centre for work and decant into alternative workspace (May)
  • The Brotherton Library is closed on weekdays for customers, although Library staff will still be able to retrieve items for the click and collect service (from 5 June)
  • Big Brotherton shelf reorganisation project (June–September)
  • Construction work on the John Bedford Room in progress (June–November)
  • West Building link corridor work and renewing the parquet floor (July–August)
  • Main Brotherton Library reopens for customers (September)
  • Furniture and fittings installed in the research centre (November–December)
  • The new Special Collections Research Centre opens (January 2022)

The effects of the Covid-19 pandemic have introduced a higher level of uncertainty in the supply chain for construction materials, which may cause a delay in some of the works. This page will be kept up to date.

Access to collections

The click and collect service will retrieve items from the Brotherton Library during the summer.

Please contact us if you have any special requirements for your research over the summer and we will do our best to help.

You may still book an appointment to view and use items from Special Collections whilst construction work is taking place. A temporary research room is set up in the Treasures of the Brotherton Gallery.

Big Brotherton shelf reorganisation project

We will complete a major phase of a long term project to reorganise the Brotherton Library’s printed stock this summer. The project overhauls how subject sequences are organised, providing more consistent and logical sequences to make it far easier to find printed items.

The final planned layout will group related classified subjects onto the same floors, all of which will be organised in an alphabetic layout on each floor by subject. A parallel element of this project is respacing all stock, some of which is currently very overcrowded, to support future collection growth and dramatically improve browsing.

By September 2021:

  • all journals in the Brotherton Library (classmarks of A-0.01) will have been moved into the West 2 Annexe.
  • all previous “Stack” journal sequences will have been reprocessed (and individual titles interfiled) to form a single periodical sequence for each subject.
  • all Stack book sequences will also have been reorganised into a single alphabetical classmark sequence on the mobile shelving on West 2.
  • some new Stack book sequences will be inserted into this sequence having been converted from many of our smaller subjects eg Archaeology, Anthropology and Numismatics (plus smaller language sequences like Icelandic, Hong Kong and Swedish) to name just a few.
  • the Library Search catalogue will be edited to show the new classmarks and locations for the moved items
  • there will be a full update of the online floorplans on the Library’s webpages.

Previously (in Summer 2020) English, Bibliography and General Literature books were reorganised on the reading room gallery (Main 4). In preparation for future phases of the project, Music Books have also been transferred to West 2 fixed shelving.

In the future and final phases of the project (dates to be confirmed) all book sequences will be reorganised into the disciplinary floors of:

  • Modern Languages on Main 1
  • Humanities on Main 2
  • Classics on Main 3 (round reading room)
  • all Creative Arts book sequences reorganised on West 2.

West Building link corridor project

Work will also take place in the link corridor between the round reading room and the West Building whilst the Brotherton Library is closed.