Iris de Freitas refurbishment, Hugh Owen Library: area now closed from 29th May 2019

To prepare for refurbishment work on the Iris de Freitas and Hermann Ethe rooms on Level E of the Hugh Owen Library during summer/autumn 2019, this area will now be closed to users from 13:00 on Wednesday 29th May after the final exam has taken place. We expect to re-open the space on the 4th November 2019. More information is available at

Iris De Freitas refurbishment focus group 12/02/2019

A focus group has been held on the planned refurbishment of the Iris De Freitas room. Six participants joined staff and the architects who are working on the refurbishment to talk through the current plans. The focus group session helped to gather student feedback along with surveys and the post-it note board in the Iris De Freitas room that have already been collected. More information can be found at:

The aim of the focus group was to gauge the opinions of students, asking for their views about the current stage of the planning process.
The architects explained their plan by showing a walk through presentation of the current plans for refurbishment. Members of staff then asked the participants for their views, the key topics covered were
– Group Study rooms
– Quiet zones
– Vending machines
– Whiteboards
– Furniture
– Study space
Some of the current plans include 3 new group study rooms, sufficient desk space to work with laptops these desks will be equipped with plug sockets as well as USB ports. More detail of the refurbishment plans will be released Mid-March, after the tender.

If you have any feedback concerning the refurbishment please share this with us by emailing –

Iris De Freitas Refurbishment

A photo of the Iris De Freitas Room.

The Iris De Freitas room in the Hugh Owen Library will be closed for refurbishment from the 3rd of June. We expect to re-open the space on the 4th November 2019.

During the planning process we asked the users of the room to give us their suggestions for improvement. We have followed this feedback, which included:
– Study rooms
– More power sockets
– Vending machines
– Comfortable furniture
– Better lighting
– Plants

Student suggestions for the refurbishment.

We are open!

Hello everyone,

Following on from a successful launch we are delighted to see the newly refurbished Hugh Owen Library Level D in full use. Our Group Study Rooms are busy and the library floor is full of students revising hard for their exams.

The space was officially reopened by our Vice-Chancellor, Professor Elizabeth Treasure on Monday January the 8th. You can read about the launch here.

We have an album of photos of the new space on Flickr.

Please continue to give us your feedback on your new space. Post on our feedback wall on Level D of the library or email

Thank you to everyone who fed their ideas into the design of the new space. We believe you can see that your feedback and ideas impacted upon the refurbishment.

On behalf of the staff in Information Services, we wish all our students who are sitting exams the very best of luck.

Benefits of the Refurbishment

Hello again!

You may have noticed a flurry of activity out the back of the Hugh Owen building this week. We have taken delivery of the furniture and the newly refurbished space is really beginning to take shape.

As we come closer to our launch date (Wednesday the 3rd of January) a reminder of the benefits of the refurbishment:
We will be increasing user space from:

  • 21 Computer Study Spaces
  • 24 Group Study Spaces
  • 21 Flexible/relaxed seating spaces
  • To:

  • 22 Computer Study Spaces (including height adjustable desk for wheelchair users)
  • 76 Group Study Spaces
  • 26 Flexible / relaxed seating
  • This is an 88% increase in study spaces for you on Level D.

    We have re-purposed back office spaces and stores to create:

  • A vending area for you to enjoy hot and cold drinks and cold snacks. This space will also be complimented with a vending machine for supplies of stationery.
  • Brand new gender neutral facilities on Level D.
  • Brand new disabled facilities, which in addition to the work the University has undertaken on the Piazza now makes Level D far more accessible.
  • Two new Group Study Rooms for up to six users and includes high spec PCs and large screen monitors.
  • We have improved ventilation, heating and lighting replacing dated systems with more energy-efficient modern systems, which saves both money and the environment as well as creating a more pleasant working environment for both students and the staff who work on Level D.

    A reminder that we re-open Level D again on Wednesday January 3rd at 8:30am.. We hope to see you then and look forward to hearing your feedback on this space.

    Ceiling tiles and Information Services User Survey 2017

    Dear library users!

    Great news – the lighting and air conditioning is now installed and our crew is putting ceiling tiles in the ceiling frame.

    On a different note, we would like to encourage all students and staff to feedback to us all your suggestions, likes and dislikes in this year’s Information Services User Survey:

    We want to know what you think about your library, the Level D refurbishment and also the services we provide.

    We wish you a good week,
    Ania and Arfon

    Updates! Group study room and gender neutral toilets.

    Hello all!

    Level D refurbishment progress is stepping up fast. Every week we see things changing and beginning to take shape. Most recently our crew started working on:

    • Your new group study room…

    • and the gender neutral toilets at the bottom of the stairs.

    We would like to apologise once again for any noise disruption. As we mentioned in our previous blog posts, this will soon become less of an issue.

    Please check our previous posts:
    We are now undertaking work on the ceiling
    Come to celebrate Level D reopening on 3 January 2018!

    You will hear from us soon,
    Ania and Arfon

    Come to celebrate Level D reopening on 3 January 2018!

    Hello again,

    Just two weeks ago we updated you on the ceiling work undertaken on Level D (see our last post here). We are pleased to say that the noisiest work is nearly over. Spaces are really starting to take shape with fixtures and fittings now being added – take a look at some new photos below:

    • The first lamps are being installed here.

    • The refreshment area is looking good!

    We know that during the past few weeks the library was not as quiet as it usually is. Your patience and understanding will be rewarded with cake for all who come to celebrate Level D reopening on Wednesday 3 January 2018. A small formal opening by the Vice-Chancellor will take place around a week later.

    We will come back soon with new updates and photos.

    Take care!

    Ania and Arfon

    We are now undertaking work on the ceiling

    Dear students and staff,

    We hope that you all settled well in the new academic year. You might have wondered why recently the library was noisier than usual. The reason for all the disruptive drilling noise in the library is that our crew has now started working on the ceiling. They will be carrying these works over the coming two weeks. We apologise for the disruption, the noise will lessen as soon as work moves to more decorative finishing touches.

    We are working towards making our Library a modern and comfortable place to study, with the very best facilities and learning resources. Let’s now take a look at what is currently happening on Level D:


    • This will be your refreshment area, where you can socialize and have a cup of tea!

    • Currently, we are installing the drop ceiling in there.

    • Looking from the refreshment area we can see the cleaning up ready for ceiling grid and the new doorway on the left.

    • Apart from the ceiling we are also working on preparing the floor for our new carpets.

    • Completing interior walls for staffing area.

    • And font door new lobby frame.


    We are grateful for your patience and hope you look forward Level D to be re-open in January 2018.

    We will update you soon, keep checking our blog for the latest refurbishment news!

    Anna and Arfon

    How to access the Hugh Owen Library during Level D refurbishment and photos of progress

    Welcome to new students and welcome back to returning students who may be suprised to find that the original library entrance on Level D is not open and that there is a temporary entrance to the Hugh Owen Library via Level E. This is due to building work taking place over summer and continuing through this first term to refurbish Level D. A reminder of why the Hugh Owen Library Level D is being refurbished.

    To help you all find your way into the Library until Level D reopens in January 2018 please see:
    How to find the Hugh Owen Library entrance from the direction of Rosser/Parry-Williams (TFTV Dept.) direction:
    How to find the Hugh Owen Library entrance from the Piazza:

    Refurbished Level D is really starting to take shape with old office walls having been removed and new walls up and plastered, making new areas. The photos below have been taken just before the start of term, and show the new group study spaces, new Enquiry Desk area and the space leading down towards the stairs up to Level E of the library. We are very excited to see so much progress and look forward to new furniture arriving in November and seeing the space in full use in January 2018.