Seasonal opening hours

The Northampton Square Library will be open from 10am to 6pm between Friday 27th and Tuesday 31st December, 2019. Security staff will be present, and yule be able to borrow items using the elf-service machines as usual.

If you are planning to visit the Library to study or revise over the festive holidays, then check out our opening hours and plan ahead.

Graphic of bells with #CityLibraryChristmas.

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All libraries will reopen on Thursday 2nd January, with Northampton Square and Cass libraries open 24/7 until the January exam period is wrapped-up.

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Please note: access for SCONUL users is permitted during Library-staffed hours but restricted during 24/7: see the Library website for more information.

Extended loans

To help you prepare for your exams, Library Services is giving you extended loan periods over the Christmas and New Year break.

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Seven day loans

If you borrow or renew a seven day loan on Friday 7th December you won’t have to bring it back until Friday the 4th of January.

24 hour loans

Pop-in on Monday 17th December or anytime up to closing time on Friday the 21st of December and you will be able to keep 24 hour loans until 10.00am on Thursday 3rd January.

Keep up to date with our opening times over the Christmas and New Year period on the Library Services website.

Christmas from the Archive

Whether through tradition, faith or common experience, Christmas is a time when family, friends and strangers come together to celebrate, remember, and look forwards with optimism to the new year approaching.

Never more is this optimism tested than when suffering hardships such as poverty, illness, or experiencing and surviving conflict: and sadly the latter has proved particularly challenging throughout history, throughout the world.

Photo of children at a Christmas party during an air raid
Christmas party sheltering from an air raid in World War II

The photo included, from our Archive, shows children having a Christmas party- but look closely at some of their faces and you begin to sense it’s no ordinary scene. The photo was taken during World War II and the young people featured are sheltering from the horrors of an air raid in the basement of what we assume is College Building (the annotations on the reverse of the photo are limited).

Many higher education colleges and universities closed during the war, but the Institute carried on, determined that normal life should continue as much as possible for everyone involved: one example of this spirit of determination being that the timetable was altered to allow students to get home safely before nightfall heralded the inevitable menace of bombings and gunfire.

The Northampton Institute (City’s previous name) played a vital role supporting both the war effort and the local community. Various armed forces were stationed here, including the RAF- and there are entries in the Alumni magazine of the time, the N’ION, detailing the Morse Code classes that students were invited to attend.

Among the other entries in the N’ION include stories from those escaping the terrors of internment camps, lists of alumni who gave their lives in defence of the freedoms many of us now take for granted, and a passionate editorial outlining the importance of the National Union of Students coming together to fight for a hopeful future based on respect, equality and above all peace: a sentiment still utterly relevant today.

Merry Christmas and a happy, peaceful to new year to all.

(If you know anything more about the photo, or persons featured, we’d love to hear from you)

 

 

 

The most wonderful films of the year

Christmas is a great time to bring together everyone, to wrap up warm, open a big tin of sweets and enjoy a cracking film. Whether you like modern comedies or classic weepies, we’re got something for you.

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Elf [BoB]

“Its hilarious”

 

Muppet’s Christmas Carol [BoB]

“It’s just so jolly! Love the songs… love Gonzo and Kermit, generally… it gets me in the spirit!”

Christmas with the Kranks [BoB]

“It highlights commercialism and the work involved, but shows the true meaning of community and sharing at the end. We are better and stronger together”.

A Christmas Story [BoB]

“This 1983 holiday classic about a working class family in the American Midwest struggling through Christmas in the 1940s has become an institution in the canon of American films.”

Snowman [BoB] 

“A happy/cosy time with my children”.

“It’s too sad really but pretty cold”.

Home Alone [BoB]

“It’s a classic, ’nuff said”.

The Family Stone [BoB]

“Very relatable when you have to visit your OH’s relatives at Christmas”.

Anything 80 or 90s with a shopping scene at Bloomingdales or Saks

Nightmare before Christmas [BoB]

“I went to see it in the cinema when I was little and loved the songs”.

Meet Me In St Louis [DVD]

“It’s a sweet, happy film, with memorable characters and the famous song ‘Have yourself a merry little Christmas'”.

The Wizard of Oz [BoB] 

“What’s not to like?”

A Chrismas Carol [BoB], Oliver [BoB], Mary Poppins, Get Santa, The Santa Clause

“Juz love em!”

Trading Places [DVD]

“It is set at Christmastime but does not focus purely on Christmas, and it is very entertaining but has a serious message that is very relevant to our current times.”

Scrooge [BoB]

“How wonderful”

It’s a Wonderful Life [DVD]

“Makes me cry”

Gremlins [BoB]

“Makes me scared”. Chosen twice.

Disney’s Christmas Carol

“It was always on during Xmas, it reminds me of my childhood!”

Love Actually [BoB]

Samantha loves this film. She “has a detailed list of reasons why”. Another member of staff loves the scene with sneaky love rat Alan Rickman buying some jewelry in a high end shop up west, “best scene in a Christmas mover ever – handsdown”.

 

This year (2017) the Northampton Square Library will be open 27th – 29th December 10 am – 6 PM for self-service and reference only use. Check Library Services website for more information on library opening times.

Have we missed anything? What’s your favourite festive film?

Revising for your exams or studying over the Christmas break?

We can confirm our opening times for the holiday period.

Northampton Square Library
From Monday 18th December to Friday 22nd December the library will be operating vacation opening hours of 9am to 10pm with reference and self-service after 5pm.

The library will be closed from Saturday 23rd December to Tuesday 26th December inclusive.

We will be open between Wednesday 27th December and Friday 29th December from 10am to 6pm (reference and self-service only).

The library will be closed Saturday 30th December 2017 to Monday 1st January inclusive.

Term time opening hours resume on Tuesday 2nd January. From Monday 8th January, 24-hour opening will begin and run until Friday 26th January.

From the 27th December until the end of 24-hour opening, access will only be available to City University students and staff.

Cass Learning Resource Centre
The library will close at 5pm on Friday 22nd December and will re-open on Tuesday 2nd January at 8.30am.

24/7 opening will run from 2nd January at 8.30am until Friday 19th January.

During this time, access will only be available to City University students and staff.

City Law School Libraries
The law libraries at Northampton Square and Gray’s Inn Place will close at 5pm on Friday 22nd December and will re-open with usual hours on Tuesday 2nd January.

24/7 Opening
To help support you during the exam period Northampton Square Library will be open 24/7 from 8:30am on Monday 8th January until midnight Friday 26th January

Cass Learning Resource Centre will be open 24/7 from Tuesday 2nd January until Friday 19th January.
Before travelling in, please check the opening times at each site.students in silent study spaces

The specials’ time of year

For some Christmas means one thing: Christmas themed TV specials. Nothing brings people together better watching than sitting around the box watching emergency births, surprise reunions and timely snow falls.

You can research the TV of Christmas past with this selection of excellent TV chosen by library staff.

Christmas crackers

Black Mirror White Christmas [BoB]

“This is such a cool series about technology and society in the future, this one is especially great if you need to get away from the sugar of Christmas !!”

“It twists a dark, compelling, and unsettling story around Christmas and technology”.

Extras Christmas Special

Arrested Development – the Christmas episode ‘Afternoon Delight’ [BoB]

“Whilst not the best ever episode of the show it has the key ingredients of a dysfunctional family, a bad Christmas party, and awkward moments, all put together with the running jokes that the series is famous for”

The Blackadder Christmas Special [BoB]

“It turns Dickens’ A Christmas Carol on its head and it hilarious”.

Knowing Me, Knowing Yule… with Alan Partridge [BoB]

“Love everything about this”

Ab Fab

“I like the Christmas special, the one where Patsy tries a little Turkey”

Peep Show Seasonal Beatings [BoB]

“I love that Peep Show where Mark’s parents come to them and Superhans goes as well.”

Family fun

Thomas and friends Ho Ho Snowman

“A lot going on in this one. Very deep”

Gavin & Stacey Christmas Special [BoB]

“It’s just so nice. At first. Then it’s hilarious”

Morecambe and Wise, Only fools and Horses, Gavin and Stacey

“Just love em!”

Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special

A festive glitterball competition

Worlds Strongest Man

“Not a Christmas themed show but something we would watch every year as a family”. All them glistening, oily muscles, oh don’t.

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Cold cut classics

Royal Family

“No idea if it’s still going  but I’ve always liked their Christmas Specials- mainly because it caters to the humour of both my parents, which makes it an easy one to watch as a family, which is rather lovely.”

It is still going. Recently one of the younger characters announced his engagement.

University Challenge Christmas Specials and Professor Higglespoon [sic], Ab Fab Christmas special, Only Fools and Horses when Del Boy falls down the bar, Year Wipe etc

“Just love ’em”

Morecambe and Wise

“Still find them funny even when they are repeated many times”

The Tractate Middoth [BoB]

“Have wanted to see if for a few Christmasses now but been unable to because my Christmas companions have thought of it, a funny name, but I absolutely love the book. I’m looking forward to getting a big plate of cheese, a well aired Burgundy and watching this one day”.

 

This year (2017) the Northampton Square Library will be open 27th – 29th December 10 am – 6 PM for self-service and reference only use. Check Library Services website for more information on library opening times.

What’s your favourite Christmas shows? Tell us in the comments below.

15 books you really need to read this Christmas

Christmas is the perfect time to snuggle up beneath the blankets or next to an environmentally friendly peat fire burner and enjoy a good read. Reading is also a good way to relax and escape the hustle and bustle of a busy home during the festive period.

We asked staff at CityLibrary for their favourite Christmas books and got some great recommendations.

Narnia*

‘Wrong will be right, when Aslan comes in sight,
At the sound of his roar, sorrows will be no more,
When he bares his teeth, winter meets its death,
And when he shakes his mane, we shall have spring again.’

Spot on'”

The Twelve Days of Christmas

“This book is basically the song with pictures, I always have trouble remembering all of the rhyme but my kids love shouting FIVE GOLD RINGS !!!!!”

Box of Delights by John Masefield*

“The wolves are running and the evil Abner Brown and his gang are on the prowl. They’re after a magical box, but Kay has it, and he’ll fight to keep it”.

None

“I don’t read during Christmas, busy enjoying relaxing/socialising with friends and families”

champagne

Hercule Poirot’s Christmas 

“A festive murder mystery full of family intrigue.  A bit like my own dysfunctional family, except more lethal”.

Father Christmas by Raymond Briggs

“Shows Father Christmas in an interesting and humorous light and has elements for both kids and adults.”

Hogfather by Sir Terry Pratchett*

“It’s an entertaining look at Christmas and winter traditions through the distorted lens of Discworld, and features Death (tall chap, hood and scythe) being forced to take on the role of Father Christmas/The Hogfather while his granddaughter sorts out the world”.

‘Twas the night before Christmas

“It was a gift for my daughter and is beautifully illustrated” says one member of staff; “because it rhymes” says another.

Dubliners

“The short story The Dead IDK if it takes place at Christmas but there is a party and it has a very evocative scene where a character watches snow falling from the the window.”

A Christmas Carol

“Reminds me of Christmas”

“Just because”

“The Christmas spirits reminding us all of Christmases past, why we should  enjoy the present and to help people in need.  The amazing change in Scrooge and how it made life better for everyone around him”.

Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris

“These short stories are quick reads in between meals that never fail to leave me in stitches”.

MR James*

“A most spooky collection. Spine chillingly good, like a cool slushie”.

Gawain and Greene Knight

“Love the lines about Christmas ‘On þe morne, as vch mon myneȜ þat tyme, joy reigns in every dwelling in the world“.

The Gospels

“I have heard the Christmas story as told in the Gospels every year for many years in church, and I like the familiarity of it”.

Harry Potter saga*

“I used to do it in school, taking advantage of the two weeks off. Now I don’t always do it, but I always feel Christmas as Harry’s time”

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*All books with asterisks are held by our friends in Islington Libraries. Anyone from City can join with a valid City card.

 

This year (2017) the Northampton Square Library will be open 27th – 29th December 10 am – 6 PM for self-service and reference only use. Check Library Services website for more information on library opening times.

What’s your favourite holiday reads? Tell us in the comments below.

Fairytale of #CityLibraryXmas

Christmas is a time of joy and good tunes. Whether you are having fun with family or friends, or spending a little bit of time revising, music can lift the spirits, energise or relax and help you bond with other people.

We asked members of staff from across City Library what their favourite festive tracks were. We got a lot of responses. Fairytale of New York and Last Christmas were both popular, but some very interesting tracks were added.

Listen to our Spotify playlist below.

 

Bianco Natal and Scende la Neve

“They are all Italian songs, we used to sing them in primary school (our teacher used to play guitar – very homey!)

The Pogues’ Fairytale of New York

“I love the lyrics!” says one. “Great to sing-a-long to” says another.

Last Christmas

“George Michael, school disco memories !!”

Silent Night and Slade’s Merry Christmas Everybody

“Remind me of people I miss”

Anything from Muppet Christmas Carol

“The best sing-along songs for Christmas” says Chloe.

Oh Holy Night

Lynn chose this. She said “At the line “Fall on your knees, O hear the angels’ voices” it gives me goose pimples and makes me cry – every time, no matter who is singing – King’s College choir or Mariah Carey.”

Tim Minchin’s White Wine In The Sun

Samantha says “I’m not religious but like a lot of non-religious people I enjoy Christmas for the chance to spend time with family and friends and this song is all about an Australian family waiting for their children to travel home for Christmas and meet them, where they’re all outside, drinking white wine in the sun and I’m not Australian either so I really like the different image from the usual snowy winter festivals we think of in Europe”.

 

This year (2017) the Northampton Square Library will be open 27th – 29th December 10 am – 6 PM for self-service and reference only use. Check Library Services website for more information on library opening times.

Have we missed one of your favourite songs? Tell us in the comments below or add it to our Spotify playlist.

Library Staff Love #13: Research methods for business students

As it’s the last Library Staff Love feature for 2016, this time we mean business. Well, by ‘we’ I mean Samantha, our Research Librarian for Cass PG & Business; and by ‘business’ I mean specifically:

Saunders, M.N.K., Lewis, P. and Thornhill, A. (2016) Research methods for business students (7th ed.) Harlow: Pearson.

Research methods for business students

Here’s why Samantha chose this title:

“[It’s an] excellent book for anyone approaching a dissertation, business mastery project or other major research project in a Cass subject, covering everything from formulating your research question in the first place to writing up at the end- including a variety of qualitative and quantitative research methods and how to pick one.”

As well as print copies at both Northampton Square and Cass Libraries, we also have this title available as an e-book: so if you’re new to using e-books, why not have a look at our helpful guide on our website.

Of course, it won’t just be business researchers and students working hard over the festive break: we know students from all disciplines will have assignments to complete and deadlines to meet; so if anyone needs any assistance using Library resources, we’re here until 3pm this Friday to answer your questions and to help if we can.

Season’s greetings!