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Inter Library Loans (ILL)

The Inter-Library Loan (ILL) service enables you to request items that are not held at Plymouth University library.

  • We will supply ILLs to University of Plymouth staff, postgraduate researchers, taught postgraduate and stage 3 undergraduate students who are researching their dissertations.
  • Students of Partner Colleges should contact their college Library for details of local ILL provision. Please see our Inter Library Loans Policy.

Before placing an Inter Library Loan

Check the following:

  • The ILL requests you make are for books or articles essential to your studies
  • The library does not already hold the item
  • It is not available freely online
  • You are able to collect and return an ILL book in person

If you need help accessing alternative resources, please speak to your Information Specialist.

Making an ILL Request

  • Log in to Primo with your Plymouth University user name and password
  • Search for the item in Primo by clicking on the Inter Library Loans link at the top of the page.
  • Select the appropriate request type, either Article, Book, or Journal, and fill in as much information as you can.
  • Click on Submit
  • If an Inter Library Loan request is necessary (i.e. the item cannot be supplied from our own stock) you will receive the message: Your search did not match any resources in the library. Use the link/s below in order to request the resource from other libraries.
  • Click on the link Submit an Interlibrary loan request; the Resource information form will appear, pre-populated with your request details.
  • Edit as necessary, remembering to choose the ‘Digital’ format for articles, as this means they can be forwarded directly to you.  If you need the requested content in an alternative format, due to disability, you should mention this in the Comments field. Please note: we cannot supply eBooks but may be able to supply a chapter from an eBook.
  • Click on the Request button.
  • Scroll up the page to make sure the message ‘Request placed’ has appeared. 

If you cannot submit an Interlibrary loan request because the item is listed in Primo as available, but is in fact missing, please email

Getting your ILL

  • PDFs of an article or book chapter should arrive within 2-4 days, directly to your email address. These will be supplied via a link for your access only. Please note, you can only access this link twice - excess of this will cause the link to expire. Please see Inter Library Loan Articles for information on how to access digital ILLs.
  • Books should arrive within a week. You will receive an email when the item is ready to collect and can pick it up from the Reception desk on Level 1. See our Collecting, Renewing and Returning ILLs article.

ILL Charges

You are not currently charged for making an ILL request. However, other fees apply.

  • There is a £6.25 renewal fee, which will be added to your library account automatically if the item becomes overdue.
  • There is a £15 ‘failure to collect’ fee, which will be added to your library account if you fail to collect your physical book or journal request from the library.
  • Lost inter library loan books from the British Library will be charged at a minimum of £214.30. Other suppliers may charge different fees. These may be able to be refunded, minus an administration fee, if the lost item is returned within six weeks.

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