SED/ On Demand

Articles from the British Library are now received as PDFs using their On Demand service. This is the quickest way of receiving articles from the British Library, and allows you to download them to your own PC, hard drive or memory stick and access them as many times as you like. Articles can also be printed, but only once.

As articles requested using On Demand are locked to a user, this enables you to view the document on any machine, including mobile devices.

Access to the document is by username and password via Adobe Reader 10 or above. Users are required to be registered for On Demand, this is a free one-off registration.


Making a request via SED/On Demand

  • Use the Inter-Library Loan request form to order journal articles.
  • Articles will be delivered to your University email address to open with your secure On Demand username and password. 
  • You will need to be connected to the internet every time you open the document.
  • You may receive print articles if the British Library does not have access to a specific journal.

Opening your document

  • You will receive an email from the Library that includes a message from the British Library with the link to your document.
  • Click on this link to go to the document retrieval page
  • Enter your British Library On Demand username and password and click to download your document.
  • You may now print this document (only once) and save it.


  • You will need Adobe Reader 10 or above
  • If you cannot open the document in Internet Explorer, try defaulting your browser to Firefox.
  • If you use Chrome as a default browser you will need to disable the built in PDF viewer. To do this type chrome:plugins in the address bar, scroll down to Chrome PDF viewer and click on disable.

Conditions of use

  • Download the document up to 30 days from receiving the Library email
  • Print and save the document within 14 days of download
  • You may print only one copy. You must not make further electronic copies or convert the file into any other format. You must not cut and paste or otherwise alter the text.
  • The saved document can be kept for 3 years.
  • If you make a request using SED/On Demand it is your responsibility to ensure that you download, print out and save the document within these time limits.

Contact the Inter library loan team for your campus