Interlending and Document Supply requests

Here’s how you place your request and what happens after that.

Placing your request

Please place your IDS request online:

  • Either
    - Choose the Article or Book form on the left-hand menu
    - Go to OneSearch, and click on the IDS Request link at the top right, then choose Book or Journal Article from the dropdown menu at the bottom of the page.
    You may need to sign in with your network username and password.
  • Please fill in the form as fully and accurately as possible. Read and accept the copyright declaration form by ticking in the acceptance box. Please do this even if you have applied for a book, as sometimes the document you require might be supplied as a copy.

Please allow enough time for us to obtain your request. While we may be able to obtain journal articles within a few days, books can take up to two weeks or longer.

What happens next?

  • We will forward your request to the British Library Document Supply Service or to another library we believe holds the item you want. The British Library usually supplies journal articles within a few days. Books can take up to two weeks to arrive but may take longer - we cannot guarantee a delivery time.
  • When the item has arrived, we will send an email to your university email account. You can collect your book from the library information point (opening hours). You will need to bring your university card with you.
  • You will usually be able to borrow books but some libraries, such as Oxford and Cambridge University, stipulate their books have to be used in the library. Valuable and older material may also be for library use only. We will notify you if the book cannot be taken out of the library.
  • You may not take IDS books abroad.
  • Journal articles from the British Library will be sent to your Lancaster University email address using Secure Electronic Delivery. Please see the British Library Electronic Delivery webpage to find out how to access your article. Please read this before you access your article to avoid problems later.
  • Sometimes a journal article is supplied as a photocopy for you to keep - you can collect it from the library information point during staffed service hours or we can post to you.