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Finding your way around

All of the University’s books, journals and other library resources are at The Hive, and as a student you can also access the County Council’s continually expanding collection of books, CDs, DVDs and other materials.

Every year, the University invests substantially in learning resources. Ahead of The Hive's opening, we added another 6,000 print books and grew our e-book collection to a massive 773,321 titles.

Of course, you can also access specialist material through the interlibrary loan scheme.

Ahead of the opening of The Hive, we grew our e-book collection to a massive 773,321 titles.

The layout of The Hive

Wherever you are in the building you are never far from wide open spaces and sheltered study areas. Sound dampening technology has been applied on all floors so you can be noisy and chatty but also find a bit of solitude when you need it.

The building has five floors and gets gradually quieter the higher you go.

Lower Ground

Lower Ground Floor

The lower ground floor is a social space, with group study areas, plasma screens, gaming stations, comfortable chairs and vending machines.


Ground Floor

The ground floor houses the colourful children’s library, exhibition spaces and the studio theatre as well as customer service desks for the County Council (know as ‘The Hub’).


1st Floor

The first floor is home to the records office and the Archaeology and Archive services. There are also study spaces, meeting rooms and a business centre (with specialist journals, databases and facilities).


2nd Floor

The second floor is full of books and study spaces. There are desks, printers, photocopiers and quiet reading spaces as well as tables for group work.


3rd Floor

The third floor is tucked into the attic and is completely sealed off from the rest of the building. It is a silent study area equipped with desks, chairs and sofas that lets you get on with some quiet study without being interrupted by talking, food or ringing mobiles.

Outside The Hive, there are balconies, terraces, gardens and bicycle storage.