University of St Andrews

University Library Special Collections

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Donating to Special Collections

One of the most important ways in which the collections have been developed over the centuries is through the generosity of individuals who have given or lent their valuable books, documents and photographs to us.  Many of our real treasures, be they incredibly rare books, or apparently commonplace diaries, private letters and photographs,  are here because people – Kings and Queens, estate-owners, professors, authors, students and ordinary folk - have enhanced the collection through bequests and gifts, or by entrusting the care of their special possessions to us. Such actions ensure both these items can be professionally cared for and that they can be made available for the benefit of researchers here in St Andrews, and indeed world-wide.

We are very fortunate still to be offered many items for the collections. We cannot accept everything: we have limited space and resources, and must collect within fairly strict guidelines.  However, we are always delighted to be offered new material, and will always consider it. If we cannot accept it, we may well be able to advise where else might be a more appropriate home.

If you would like to consider making a bequest or gift of items for the collections, please do contact us. Your enquiry will be passed to the appropriate member of the curatorial staff for attention. We would be delighted to hear from you, and to discuss copyright or other legal issues, or any terms and conditions which you might wish to apply.

If you wish to retain ownership of material, but would be willing to deposit it with us to allow it to be used by researchers, we will also be happy to discuss this possibility with you.