The Whipple Library is open to all members of the University of Cambridge and to others with an interest in the History and Philosophy of Science.
We can offer borrowing privileges to all current staff, students, visitors and alumni of all departments and faculties of the University of Cambridge with active University Library cards.
Affiliated members of the Department of History and Philosophy of Science, and staff and students from other universities are welcome to register to use the Library as readers, but will not normally be offered borrowing privileges unless you qualify as above.
In common with University Library policy, non-University members must be aged 18 years or over to use the Whipple Library, unless by special arrangement.
The Whipple Library is not normally open to members of the general public, except when advertised for special events. However, if you have a particular interest in material held here that is not available elsewhere, please contact us to explain your circumstances and we will do our best to help you.
N.B. It may not always be possible to accommodate such special arrangements on the spot, so please make enquiries before visiting in person to avoid disappointment.
How to register
University of Cambridge members (current & alumni)
Please bring your University card or University Library card to the staff desk on your first visit. We will ask you to complete a short registration form and sign to agree to abide by our terms and conditions.
Academic visitors / External researchers
Please bring some form of current institutional ID (e.g. staff or student card from another university) to the staff desk on your first visit and we will ask you sign a Visitor form which will be valid for the duration of your stay. It is not necessary to book an appointment in advance to use modern material, but if you require access to items from our special collections please contact us with the details in advance. Further information about consulting our special collections.
Library staff are very happy to help you find your way around the collections, and to provide advice and suggestions as necessary, and as time and other commitments permit. However, please note that we cannot offer a comprehensive personal research service, and visitors will be expected to have used the online catalogue in advance of their visit to establish that the material they need is available. Help with using the Cambridge online catalogue interface is available here.