Rent a private study carrel

Private study room

All the carrels offer the same facilities and are located on the 4th floor of the Library in either the Goldsmiths Library, the Middlesex South, or the Middlesex North reading rooms.


Quiet study spaces

  • Your own private study room in a 4th floor reading room with minimal distraction.
  • A lockable door, desk and storage space.
  • Internet connectivity (via WiFi or network cable).
  • The option of issuing 20 books to the carrel, for reference use within the carrel (subject to the Library’s normal policy regarding renewals and fines). Please take your books to the Service Desk to have them issued to your carrel account.  Once issued, during your carrel occupancy, you may then renew yourself at, using the name on the carrel key fob e.g. Carrel A and the barcode underneath the name which begins 019…  Books will be renewed for one week at a time.


You must be a member of the Library to rent a carrel.

  • University of London academic staff and research (PhD/MPhil) students may book a carrel for up to 6 months in advance.
  • New stock for six months in advance will be added to the shop at the beginning of each month on a rolling basis e.g. From 1st January, it will be possible for University of London academic and PhD students to book weeks up to the end of June.
  • All other Library members may book a carrel for one week at a time only. The booking cannot be made until the Thursday before the week required. Any booking made too soon will be cancelled and a refund requested.


Rental price

The cost during term time is £17.50 per week and £15 per week during vacation time.


Make a booking

  1. All bookings are placed via the University of London Online Shop via debit or credit card. Carrels are booked on a weekly basis, Monday – Saturday.
  2. Each available week shows as a separate product in the Online Shop. Please add one carrel to your basket from each of the weeks you require. If all carrels have been sold for a given week, when you add the carrel to your basket, the display will indicate “out of stock”.
  3. Eligible customers who wish to book more than one week at a time, need to click on "Continue shopping", select "Product catalogue", then "Senate House Library publications" and "SHL research carrels" and select the next carrel you require.
  4. You will receive an email confirming your booking.
  5. On the first day of the period you have booked, show the email to staff on the 4th floor Service Desk. You will be issued a key to a carrel from one of our three 4th floor reading rooms, either the Goldsmiths Library, the Middlesex South reading room or the Middlesex North reading room, for the duration of your booking.


Extend a booking

  1. Place a new booking for the additional week(s) as described above. Remember, University of London academic staff and PhD/MPhil students may renew their carrel at any time. All other Library members must wait until Thursday to book for the following week. Renewals requested too soon will be cancelled and a refund requested.
  2. The due date of your carrel key on your Library record will be updated within 24 hours – although this may take longer if you renew on a Friday or Saturday or during a period that the library is closed. We advise academic staff and research students to renew in plenty of time. All renewals are placed via the University of London Online Shop.
  3. The carrel that you currently occupy will be the carrel that is renewed for you.
  4. Whether you renew your carrel on a week by week basis, or are eligible to book for a longer period, you need to renew books issued to the carrel yourself on a week by week basis. Books renewed late will accrue fines of 30p per day. While every effort is made to contact readers, we cannot confirm or guarantee delivery of Library reminder notices. You can log into your carrel allowance account online to renew your books using the name of the carrel e.g. Carrel A, and the carrel's book allowance barcode which will begin with the number 019...  Both of these details are displayed on your carrel key fob. 


Please read this before booking a carrel

Carrel occupants have a reference use only allowance of 20 books which are issued to the carrel for one week at a time by staff at the Service Desk. Books must be renewed by the carrel occupant, either at the Service Desk or online using the carrel name and membership number displayed on the carrel key fob. Late renewals of books issued to the carrel will incur fines. Late returned keys will incur a fine at the daily carrel rental rate.

Carrel users not in possession of their key will not be able to access the carrel. Lost carrel keys will incur a £20 non-refundable fine. Carrel users will not be able to access the carrel while a replacement key is being cut.

In keeping with Senate House Library food and drink policy, no food or drink, except bottled water, should be consumed in the carrel.

During the occupancy of the carrel, the occupant is expected to keep the carrel reasonably neat and tidy and leave it clean, tidy and empty of personal possessions and any litter at the end of occupancy. Any waste should be placed in the recycling bins located at the entrance of each reading room. Carrels will be routinely cleaned once every month. If you notice a problem with your carrel, please report any cleaning issues to the 4th floor Service Desk.

Once a year, during the summer vacation period, all carrels will be deep cleaned during operating hours and access will be restricted for a short time.

Prior to booking, please read the Library regulations and the additional terms and conditions covering carrel rental.

For support and information email