Wellbeing in the libraries

The Bodleian Libraries run a wide range of activities to help support wellbeing for staff, students and readers.

Upcoming sessions

Check back to this page to find out about upcoming wellbeing sessions.

Origami for DPhils

Thursday 6 June, 5.30–6.30pm | Radcliffe Science Library

Origami is a great activity to be creative and reduce stress. Learning a new craft, or practicing an old one, can be a great way to rest and rejuvenate yourself. Join our origami expert Peter Buchan-Symons for an origami session in the Radcliffe Science Library aimed at beginners. Instructions and paper will be provided you just have to bring your enthusiasm. This session is intended for DPhils.

Spaces are limited so remember to book your place.

DPhil Crafty Connections

Tuesday 18 June 2024, 5.30–7pm | Radcliffe Science Library

Join us in the Radcliffe Science Library for a relaxed early evening event for DPhils where you'll have a chance to try out a range of paper-based activities, including origami, colouring in, decoration making and more! Snacks and hot drinks will be provided!! This is a great opportunity to network with fellow DPhil students and try your hand at some new crafts.

Regular activities

Quiet activities in the libraries

Many of our libraries have set up a quiet corner with activities to help you take a break whenever you need it, including colouring, jigsaws and origami. Find them at the following library sites:

  • Bodleian Old Library: in the Reader Common Room.
  • Education Library: on the coffee table.
  • Girdlestone Memorial Library at the NOC: on the wellbeing trolley.
  • Japanese Library: on the entrance level.
  • KB Chen China Centre Library.
  • Law Library: coffee table by exit.
  • Social Science Library
  • Knowledge Centre at the Old Road Campus: in the library entrance.
  • Cairns Library at the John Radcliffe Hospital: in the wellbeing area.

The Radcliffe Science Library has a dedicated Wellbeing Room. Staff and students of the University are welcome to drop in whenever they wish to relax, centre themselves or rest. There is ‘quiet time’ daily 4–5pm, when the lights are dimmed and calming nature videos play. To check out the wide range of wellbeing events taking place in the Radcliffe Science Library, please view the RSL Wellbeing Calendar.

The ‘Space for Reading’ is also available for everyone in the public atrium of the Weston Library (Monday to Friday: 9am – 5pm; Saturday: 10am – 5pm; Sunday: 11am – 4pm).

A table display of books

Book swap at the Bodleian Old Library

Lego Lunch, every Wednesday 1–2pm

You bring the lunch & we bring the Lego. Eat, chat, create! At the Radcliffe Science Library, in the Wellbeing Room.

Coffee Morning, every Friday at 10.30–11.30am

Join library staff, students and researchers at this lively and welcoming weekly event, held in the Centre for the Study of the Book inside the Weston Library. After time for chatting, there is a ‘show and tell’ of one or more of the fascinating items in the Library’s special collections. Tea and coffee provided.

Nature Walk, 1st Monday of each month, 1–2pm

Join a gentle nature walk around some of the University’s parks. Meet in the RSL wellbeing room.

Craft and Chat at the Health Care Libraries

Bring a craft project (any welcome, e.g. knitting, crochet, cross stitch, embroidery, origami) and meet other crafters. Find out more about upcoming Craft and Chat sessions.

Book Clubs at the Health Care Libraries

Join one of our friendly book clubs to take part in thought-provoking discussions of a diverse range of books. Find details of our book clubs and what we are reading next.

Take a GLAM break

If you need a longer break, why not use your University card to visit a museum or garden? Wander round the Botanic Garden, immerse yourself in art at the Ashmolean, hang out with the dinosaurs at the Museum of Natural History, hunt for tucked away items at the Pitt Rivers Museum or marvel at the astrolabes at the History of Science Museum.

A border of colourful flowers


More support

More help and support is available during your time at Oxford: