Using the reading room

Your time in the Fryer Library's FW Robinson Reading Room will be best spent if you plan your visit first.

Many items in Fryer's collection are fragile, rare and unique. While we aim to make these materials accessible, we also need to protect them from damage or loss. We appreciate your support in preserving our special and rare collections for future researchers by:

  • Providing photographic identification - University ID, driver’s licence or 18 + card. Fryer staff may keep your ID while you are using Fryer material or locker
  • Registering as a manuscript user
  • Placing all belongings in the provided lockers
  • Keeping the reading room a food and drink free zone (including no bottled water or lozenges)
  • Checking with library staff before making copies or taking photographs
  • Not removing Fryer items from the reading room
  • Using PENCIL ONLY to take notes and not marking, altering or tracing the items in any way.

For users of rare book and manuscript materials

  • Only one box of manuscript material, or one rare book will be issued at a time. If you require more than one item at a time, please consult with Library staff.
  • Handle items with care. Place items securely on the table without any overhang. Do not place anything on top of the item or lean on the item. Take care when turning pages; do not moisten fingers or use rubber finger- stalls. Book pillows and cotton gloves will be supplied.
  • Please wash and dry your hands thoroughly before handling items. Hand lotions, sunscreens and the skin’s natural oils can cause deterioration and staining of paper.
  • Keep items in their original order. Individual items must not be removed from the file, bundle or folder in which they are kept. Paper flags are available for place marking; do not use post-it notes, cardboard, pens, pencils, notepads or fold corners of pages to mark a place.
  • If you notice any damaged or deteriorating records while using a collection, please advise Library staff. In some cases, access to very fragile material may be restricted to assist long-term preservation.
  • Photographing or photocopying rare books and manuscript material is not permitted. This includes photography using mobile devices. If you require copies, please discuss your needs with Fryer staff. In some cases, digital photography may be permitted once copyright has been cleared.

If you require any specialist conservation equipment when using manuscripts or rare books or have any questions or concerns about items in our collection, please let us know.