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Document Delivery

Ordering journal articles from the RCS Library

Are you?

  • From a health, charity or academic library?
  • A Member or Affiliate of the College?

Then you can order articles from our collection, using our document delivery service. Please go to the appropriate section to read more:


Health, charity and academic libraries in the UK can request articles required for a non-commercial purpose from our journal collection, as long as they participate in the British Library's document delivery scheme. We use the British Library scheme to reclaim the charges for our service. Please read our service level agreement for full details of eligibility, copyright requirements and procedures. Libraries using the service to order material will be deemed to have accepted this agreement.

Step 1

Please check the library catalogue, or our journals holding list to ascertain that we hold the journal. Please remember that we cannot supply more than one article from any one issue of a journal at any one time, as this contravenes copyright law.

Step 2

Download our order form template and complete the details.

We need your British Library account number and a request number for each request in order to process your order.

Step 3

Email the completed form to We will then supply the material or contact you if there are any problems.

Service levels and costs

Normal requests:

You can make up to 6 requests per day, for articles less than 20 pages in length. We will deliver your requests within 2 working days. The cost per article will be £4.00.

Special requests:

If you have special requirements, such as needing the material more quickly, or want to order an article that is longer than 20 pages, please refer to our service level agreement. We will advise on costs at the time of request.


Members and Affiliates of the Royal College of Surgeons of England, the Faculty of Dental Surgery and Faculty of General Dental Practice are able to use the document delivery service.

We can send articles from the RCS Library as PDFs, at a cost of £2.60 per article. If we do not hold the journal you require, we may be able to obtain it from another library, as a photocopy. This usually costs between £7 and £8 per article. We will advise you on the actual cost, prior to going ahead with the order. The procedure for ordering articles is outlined below. If you have any questions, please email

  1. Please check the library catalogue, or our journals holding list to ascertain that we hold the journal. Please remember that we cannot supply more than one article from any one issue of a journal, or make more than one copy of an article, as these contravene copyright law.
  2. Print out, complete and sign our photocopy request and copyright declaration form. We need to receive a copyright declaration to be able to provide PDFs or photocopies for non-commercial research or private study. Please provide full contact details, including a telephone number and/or email address, and your College membership details.
  3. This form should also be used to provide your payment details. Credit/Debit Card: We accept most credit/debit cards with the exception of American Express. We will not process the payment until we have supplied the PDF or photocopy, and you will receive a receipt with the item.  Note: We do not issue invoices but a payment receipt will be included with your article.
  4. Return your completed and signed form to the library by one of the following means:

    -email to - the completed and signed form should be scanned as a PDF (.pdf) or image (.jpg or .png) and attached to the email

    -post to:
    Document Delivery
    The Library
    The Royal College of Surgeons of England
    35-43 Lincoln's Inn Fields
    London WC2A 3PE.

  5. If you wish to use either the same day or urgent service, please telephone the library beforehand (020 7869 6556), or email your request as above with the required service level clearly marked. All unspecified requests will be treated as standard.
  6. PDFs or photocopies will be sent on receipt of the signed copyright declaration, in accordance with the service level specified. No responsibility will be accepted for events out of our control such as postal strikes or non-delivery.
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