Recalled loans

Why do some books have to be returned before the original due date?

You may receive a "recall notice" if someone else has reserved an item on loan to you. This recall notice is sent to your University email address. When a reservation is placed on an item on loan, the library system is set up to reserve all copies of that title, and recall one of them (the one that is due back soonest).  This is an automated process, designed to be as fair as possible to everyone. 

This may mean that we will ask you to return an item on loan to you before the date given when you borrowed it. The recall notice will give you seven days to return the loan and advise you to ignore the original due date. We know that nobody likes having loans recalled but we have to try and ensure fair access to stock in demand and balance the needs of everyone.   

If your item is recalled and you have had to return it, you can also reserve it if you still need to use it. Alternatively, you could check to see if there is an e-book available. If there is a queue of people who need the same item, each person will automatically get only one week to use the book so that everyone gets a fair chance.

Note: If you do not return the item by the new due date, your library account will be blocked and you will not be able to borrow or renew anything until the matter is resolved. If you believe you have already returned the book, or it has been lost or stolen, please see our missing book procedure

When does the recall process run?

The recall process runs every night during the Autumn Teaching Block, during the Spring Teaching Block and during the Consolidation & Assessment period, up to one week before the end of each. In order to give fair access to books when there is increased demand, the recall process also runs during the Easter vacation, in the run up to the handing in of assessments and revision for exams. 

Please check your university email regularly in case we ask you to return your loans sooner than expected as your library account will be blocked if recalled books are not returned. If you are away from the University during the Easter vacation, you can post your books back to us by sending them to The University Library, Cambridge Road, Portsmouth, Hampshire, UK, PO1 2ST.

When does the recall process not run?

The recall process is suspended during the Christmas and summer vacation which means that you can place reservations, but items won't be called back early during these times. If an item has an outstanding reservation on it, then it will only be issued for one week, even if it is the vacation. This also means that it cannot be renewed as the reservation takes priority, even if it is the vacation.

The recall process is restarted at the end of the vacation and recalls are sent out for all reservations made during the vacation. Although recalls are suspended for the summer vacation, we will try and contact the person to see if they are able or willing to return the item requested if it is urgent. However, if they are out of the country this may not be possible. In this case it may be possible to obtain a copy through our Interlibrary Loan service.