RLUK Database

Research Libraries UK (RLUK) has established a Union Catalogue database, and offers a record retrieval service for bibliographic records.

This record retrieval service provides records in MARC21 format at competitive rates. The service can be accessed using Z39.50 or a web-based interface. The service is open to any non-profit organisation. There is a flat-rate for searching and no other charges. Use of the database is subject to signing licence agreements. A month’s free trial is available if required by completing the registration forms.

** The RLUK Database is now closed, replaced by the National Bibliographic Knowledgebase.


Funded and run by Jisc on behalf of the community, Copac is a traditional library catalogue – which means it gives access to details of documents and their location. There are some 40 million records on Copac representing the merged holdings of RLUK member institutions, including the British Library, the National Library of Scotland, and the National Library of Wales/Llyfrgell Genedlaethol Cymru, plus special collections from a number of non-RLUK libraries.

Archives Hub

Also funded and run by Jisc, the Archives Hub is an aggregating service which provides a single point of access to descriptions of archive collections held in institutions throughout the United Kingdom. More than 200 institutions are contributing information about their archives to the Hub, which holds thousands of descriptions. The website (and API) is free to use and contains information relevant to a wide range of research areas.

Top image courtesy of Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford