Collections|Part of Library facilities

Copying and photography

Photograph of a windowless photographic studio. In the centre is a table covered in a black cloth. Standing over the table is a man holding a light meter above an artwork which is resting on the table. Behind him is a large camera stand. To either side are large softboxes mounted on studio flash heads. In the foreground to the left is a trolley containing studio accessories. In the foreground to right is a computer display and keyboard.
Photographic services, Photo: Thomas SG Farnetti. Source: Wellcome Collection. Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0).

You can use scanners, operated by your library account, to make copies from our collections. You can also use your own camera in the library, subject to some regulations.


If you want to make a copy of something from our collections, first check our library catalogue to see if there’s already a digital copy. We have thousands of high quality digital images, books and unpublished materials from our collections, which are easily accessed online and most can be downloaded. 

Whether you're using your own camera or our copying facilities, please remember that you can only make copies for research and study or for non-commercial personal use. It’s your responsibility to observe UK copyright law


We provide scanners rather than photocopiers in the library in order to minimise wear and tear on items in our collections. The scanning service is only available to members of the library, and the cost of scanning is automatically deducted from credit on your membership account via your library card.  

The scanners are available in the Printing and Scanning Rooms on levels 2 and 3 in the library. Digital copies can be saved to your USB/memory stick (we don't supply USB sticks in the library), or printed out on our network printers.  

Copying price list  

  • 2p per digital image 
  • 10p per A4 black-and-white print  
  • 26p per A4 colour print 
  • 10p per sheet from microfilm (Rare Materials Room machine only)

Using your own camera

You’re allowed to use your own digital camera to make copies of most items in our collections. But please be sure to observe the library’s handling guidelines and UK copyright regulations.   

If you want to make your own copies of items in the Rare Materials Room, please check with staff at the RMR enquiry desk first, as special handling rules apply for these materials. Our staff can answer any questions you have about copying from the collections.  

Photography service

Our photography service can provide you with high resolution images of items from our collections. The service is free and takes approximately four weeks for delivery.

Before placing an order, please check our library catalogue to see if there is already a digital version of the item. If a digitised version exists, you’ll be able to download a copy from the catalogue. 

If an item is still in copyright, you will have to provide us with written permission from the copyright owner before we can provide copies, unless you plan to use a copyright exception under UK law.

Please don’t request the item through the library catalogue if you want us to photograph it: this will stop us requesting it from the stores and will slow down your photography order.

To request images, please complete the online photography order form

Get in touch

Library enquiries+44 (0)20 7611 8722