Taylor Institution Library for disabled readers

A room of desks with wooden bookshelves around the edge of the room

From 29 July, a maintenance project will be taking place in the Taylor Institution Library basement for approximately 6 weeks. During this time, parts of the basement will be closed from 5–7pm, and there will be no access at any time to the central section of the Slavonic and Modern Greek research collections for the duration of the project. The library will also be closed on Saturday 3 August, Saturday 10 August and Saturday 17 August. Ahead of the move, there may be some disruption in the basement as staff prepare the area. If you have any queries, please contact the Librarian-in-Charge, Joanne Ferrari (joanne.ferrari@bodleian.ox.ac.uk), or Taylor Enquiries (tay-enquiries@bodleian.ox.ac.uk).



We aim to ensure that all our readers can access library services, although the design and layout of the Taylor Institution building means that not all areas are accessible.

The main entrance to the Taylorian is off St Giles’ and has ramp access. The front doors are powered. You will need a valid University card to access the building.

The library is spread over five floors, with the issue desk in the Teaching Collection on the ground floor and the research enquiry desk on the second floor. There are two main staircases and several subsidiary ones connecting the different levels. The first floor and the second floor are accessible by lift. Room 2 and the Slavonic Reading Room are accessible via a platform lift located in the main entrance area. Please ask at the lodge for assistance if you need to use the platform lift.

Users of lightweight wheelchairs can also access the Voltaire Room via the platform lift.

There is one accessible lavatory on the ground floor, near the Lecture Hall.

Staff will fetch books to the ground floor for readers with mobility problems.

You can find more detailed accessibility information in the University Access Guide.

If you would like to discuss your support needs, including a Personal Emergency Evacuation Plan (PEEP), please contact the Disability Liaison for the Taylor Institution Library, Frank Egerton (frank.egerton@bodleian.ox.ac.uk).

For general enquires about accessibility and services for disabled readers, contact: tay-enquiries@bodleian.ox.ac.uk

Services and support

Ergonomic furniture

Height-adjustable desks can be found in the Main Reading Room (manual), Periodicals & Reference Room and Teaching Collection Reading Room (electronic). Ergonomic chairs are available in the Voltaire Room, Periodicals & Reference Room and Teaching Collection Reading Room. The Voltaire Room also has a footstool. 

Assistive equipment

Assistive equipment is available in the library. There are induction loops at the issue desk and the enquiry desk. 

Please ask at the issue desk to borrow the following equipment:

  • book stands
  • daylight lamp
  • magnifiers
  • coloured acetate sheets
  • coloured paper for printing
  • ear plugs

CCTV/OCR magnifier

The Taylor has a DaVinci Pro CCTV/OCR magnifier, currently located in the French and German Reading Room. The device can display high-definition enlarged images which can be of benefit to readers with low vision. The device also has an Optical Character Recognition (OCR) mode which can take snapshots of written text and convert them to audio speech.

Please ask library staff if you wish to use the device. There are brief instructions near the device and a full instruction manual can be obtained from the enquiry desk. 


We encourage members of the University to contact the Disability Advisory Service to discuss their requirements. The service will liaise with the library. Find out more about the support and services available for disabled readers from the Bodleian Libraries.

Readers who are not a member of the University should contact the Taylor’s Operations Manager and disability coordinator, Frank Egerton, to discuss their requirements: frank.egerton@bodleian.ox.ac.uk.

Through the Disability Advisory Service, disabled readers can be registered with a library membership that provides extended loan periods and increased borrowing allowances. Readers can also request proxy borrowing on their accounts. This allows a nominated person to collect and return items on behalf of the reader. All items borrowed in this way remain the responsibility of the reader.

All readers may renew by telephone, in person, or online using SOLO. Disabled readers with extended loan periods may also renew and request reservations by email.