Access and accessibility

University Library disability policy and general information

The University library is committed to providing equality of access to services and facilities, and to the development of an inclusive environment for all users and staff. We aim to offer assistance and support wherever possible to any user who is deaf, has a disability or specific learning difficulty such as dyslexia.

Download a large print version of our guide

We will continue to monitor and review our services, and we welcome your feedback.

Our leaflets can be produced in alternative formats upon request.

The University's Student Wellbeing Service offers support and advice for all students who have a disability or specific learning difficulty.

Current students should send queries via the web enquiries form or telephone: 0191 208 3333.

Access to/within the library

Robinson Library

There are three parking spaces reserved for disabled users at the rear of the Robinson Library.

If you anticipate problems with either parking or entering the library, please contact the University Student Wellbeing Service, David Errington or Sheila Bennett, who will be happy to give advice and help seek solutions. The porters at the Reception Desk just inside the entrance will be pleased to help you.

Within the building there are two user lifts with low level tactile buttons which give access to all public areas. If user lifts are out of order please contact the Main Counter on Level 2 where staff will provide assistance with using the staff lift.

Most users' areas are accessible to wheelchair users. Some areas which may present problems are:

  • access to Level 1 requires negotiating heavy doors
  • doors to some study rooms which are of standard width

If you anticipate difficulties, please contact the Main Counter on Level 2 where staff will provide help and give advice.

Walton Library

There is a parking bay at the front of the Medical School for disabled users. A ramp gives access to the Medical School and there are lifts to give access to the 5th floor, where the library is located. The library is on one level and all areas are accessible to wheelchair users.

Law Library

The library is located in Newcastle Law School (21-24 Windsor Terrace), and is located in the basement. A parking bay is available at the rear of the School building for readers with disabilities. The library is accessible to wheelchair users via a lift located near to the Law School Reception; there is a power-assisted door to enable entry to the library itself. There are some areas of the library which will present problems to wheelchair users (e.g. steep ramps). If you require assistance, please speak to the Law Library Staff at the Issue Desk. If you anticipate problems with either parking or entering/using any library please contact the University Student Wellbeing Service or contact us through Library Help.

Fire and emergency evacuation procedures

Robinson Library

If you have mobility problems or impaired hearing please inform the porters at the Reception Desk when entering and leaving the library. In the event of an emergency, we can alert the Fire Brigade to your presence.

Disabled refuges are situated in staircases C (Levels 3 and 4) and E (Levels 2, 3 and 4). Help-phones are installed at each point to enable you to contact the porters and the double doors give half an hour protection from fire. We have an EVAC chair on Level 3 and 4, which can be used to evacuate you during an emergency.

We ask all users with disabilities to contact Joan Hulme who will discuss a personal evacuation plan for use in an emergency situation.

Walton Library

Users requiring a Personal Disability Plan should contact Edna Latham. In the event of an emergency evacuation, please make your way to a landing outside a fire exit where an EVAC chair is available and staff will come to assist you.

Facilities and services

Computing clusters

The computer clusters offer a range of assistive software in the EasyAccess folder. There are also a number of height adjustable workstations in the clusters. The IT Service have a page on their website giving further details of what software and services are available.

Extended loan periods

Extended loan periods are available on most categories of books.

  • Advance bookings (Robinson Library only)- these four hour bookable loans MAY be extended for 24 hours if there are no previous bookings and the item is not in high demand. Please ask at the STC Desk.
  • Walton Library four hour loans become 24 hour loans.
  • Next day loan becomes 48 hour loan
  • One week loan - may be extended for two weeks
  • Four week loan - no extension (as may be renewed)
  • e-book loans - may be extended for two weeks. Readers need to add a note on the e-book request form in the Comments box e.g. 'Registered for extended loans with Student Wellbeing'.

Recalled items cannot be extended and must be returned by the due date otherwise overdue charges may be levied.

Extra borrowing is also available but must be approved by your Liaison Librarian.

Hardware Loans Scheme

Readers can borrow equipment from the Hardware Loans Scheme which is run by the IT Service and housed in the Robinson Library. A wide variety of equipment is available including:

  • digital recorders
  • magnifiers
  • portable CCTVs

Items are issued from the Main Counter on Level 2 during staffed hours.

Find out more about the Hardware Loans Scheme.

Photocopying and retrieval of items from shelves

All library staff are happy to assist users in retrieving items from shelves or with photocopying. Please contact the main Reception Desk for assistance, however please note staff may be delayed if the library is busy.

Accessible study rooms

For information on accessible study rooms available across all libraries see study rooms and study spaces.

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