Library operates with reduced opening hours for the first two weeks of term

Opening hours will extend from September 27, with the lending libraries remaining closed on Sundays

Trinity’s libraries are to operate at reduced opening hours until September 26. 

For the first two weeks of Michaelmas term, the Berkeley, Lecky and Ussher (BLU) complex and Hamilton library are open weekdays from 9.30am until 5pm, with the service counter open from 10am to 3.30pm. 

The BLU and Hamilton libraries are closed on Saturdays and Sundays until September 26. 

From Monday 27 September, the Library will return to opening hours somewhat reflecting those it had before the first lockdown in March 2020. 

The BLU and Hamilton libraries will open weekdays from 9am to 10pm, with the service counters available from 10am to 7.45pm. These libraries will also open on Saturdays from 9.30am to 1pm, but will remain closed on Sundays. 

Meanwhile, Kinsella Hall (the first to third floors of the Ussher Library) currently operates as a study space on weekdays and weekends until 10pm. When the BLU complex is closed, students in Kinsella Hall are not able to use library books. 

The postgraduate 1937 Reading Room is currently closed, but will reopen on September 20 from 8am to 10pm, Monday to Sunday. 

The John Stearne Medical Library is currently and will continue open from 9.30am to 4pm on weekdays. From September 27, it will reopen on Saturdays from 9.30am to 1pm. The service counter operates for the length of opening. 

Before the pandemic, the BLU complex and Hamilton library were open the same on weekdays, 9am to 10pm. However, the libraries opened until 4pm on Saturdays in September and October 2019. 

During November and December, in the lead up to assessments, the BLU and Hamilton libraries opened until 7pm on Saturdays, and opened on Sundays from 11am to 7pm. 

In 2019, Kinsella Hall and the 1937 Reading Room operated as 24-hour study spaces. The John Stearne Medical Library opened from 9am to 9.45pm on weekdays. 

Speaking to Trinity News, a spokesperson for the Library said: “To clarify, Library opening hours have not been adjusted. They will change on Monday 27th September to include evening and Saturday opening in the BLU Complex and Hamilton Library.”

“However, to meet the needs of students during orientation and the start of teaching term, the Library has extended the opening hours of our service counters in the BLU Complex and Hamilton (from Monday 13th September)” they clarified 

“They are now 10am-3.30pm, Monday to Friday.”

“Kinsella Hall will remain open until 10pm each night leading up to the change of hours on Monday 27th September” they continued.

The Library continues to operate at reduced capacity, with face-coverings required and the booking system, 1 hour 45 minute limit per slot and two metre social distancing in place. 

Under the current system, there are 307 seats in the BLU complex (65 in the Berkeley, 78 in the Lecky and 164 in the Ussher), and 17 computer seats. 

There are an additional 17 seats reserved for postgraduate students on the fifth floor of the Ussher, and 8 seats reserved for students registered with the College Disability Service in the Assistive Technology Information Centre (ATIC). 

There are 84 seats and 5 computer seats in the Hamilton library, and 32 seats in the Stearne library, with 2 PCs. 

The Library anticipates that the capacity of the 1937 Reading Room for postgraduate students will be around 50, when it reopens later this month.

Not all seats in the libraries have power sockets available. 

Speaking to Trinity News, the Library spokesperson said: “The normal pre-pandemic capacity of the contemporary reading rooms (i.e. excluding the Old Library reading rooms) was approximately 3000 seats.”

“The current capacity at 2m social distancing is approximately 700 seats.”

There are approximately 18,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students at Trinity.

Sarah Emerson

Sarah Emerson is currently a Deputy News Editor of Trinity News. She is a Senior Sophister English Literature and Jewish and Islamic Civilizations Student.