House rules for library visitors

The following rules are in the interests of preserving and protecting our collections, and encouraging a pleasant study environment for all. They are a condition of using the library.

Unlike the rest of the BFI Southbank building, food and drink is not permitted in the Edwin Fox Foundation Reading Room. Drinking water is permitted but must be in a sealed container such as a bottle or flask.

You must complete a registration form, and place your bags and other belongings in a locker if you wish to:

  • use a research desk
  • consult material from the closed access stack or multimedia vault

Bags larger than 30cm by 24cm must be placed in a locker. This includes handbags and laptop bags. We are unable to store large rucksacks and suitcases and you are advised to make alternative arrangements before arriving at the library.

Switch mobile phones off or to silent during your visit, and be mindful of headphone noise and conversation levels.

Digital photography and personal scanners are not permitted in the library. Use our self-service scanning equipment to copy eligible material.

Our public access computer terminals are intended solely for accessing our databases and searching our collections. Be considerate of your fellow researchers’ needs and limit your usage to one hour at busy times.

The BFI Reuben Library is a reference library. Under no circumstances may library materials be removed from the reading room.

Treat library materials with care, and note that not all material can be copied in the interests of preserving the collection. If you are unsure, ask a member of library staff for guidance.

Bring any existing damage to the attention of library staff.

If you require help in handling an item that is particularly large or fragile, ask a member of library staff for assistance. We can provide book supports and weights to assist you.

If an item you require is on a high shelf, ask a member of staff to retrieve it for you.