Online resources by subject

Westminster's libraries offer many free online resources to members.Browse through our collection of 24/7 resources and In-House Specials (IHS) by subject using the content table on this page.

24/7 resources can be accessed anywhere you can reach the internet - just log in with your library card number. If you're not a Westminster libraries member, join now
IHS are only available at specific libraries in Westminster. Library staff may need to log you in, so please ask us.

If you are looking for a specific database and cannot see it in this guide, please explore Online Resources in London Public Libraries.

1. Quick reference and encyclopedias

Title Description More information
Access to Research Free access in public libraries to thousands of academic journals IHS from all libraries
Civil Service Yearbook Contact details for all government departments, offices, museums, QUANGOs, libraries, etc IHS from Westminster Reference Library
Credo Reference A wide range of high quality reference books 24/7
Gale Virtual Reference Library Over 120 ebooks on arts, humanities and sciences 24/7
KnowUK Directories and information sources on all aspects of life in the UK 24/7
Oxford Dictionaries Combines Oxford Dictionaries Pro with Oxford Language Dictionaries including audible pronunciations 24/7
Oxford Digital Reference Shelf A collection of ebooks on the arts, literature and language, science and social science, and history and culture 24/7
Oxford English Dictionary (OED) The most extensive dictionary of the English language and its origins 24/7
Oxford Reference Online Over 200 reference books from the Oxford University Press 24/7

2. Advice and help

Title Description More information
Which? Local Forum for Which? readers to recommend service providers used in their local area IHS from Marylebone Information Service
Which? Test results, recommendations and advice guides IHS from Marylebone, Pimlico, Victoria and Westminster Reference Library


3. Art and design

Title Description More information
Art Abstracts and Art Full Text Bibliographic database of periodicals, yearbooks, and museum bulletins 24/7
Art Index Retrospective Citations to Art Index volumes 1-32 of the printed index (1929 and 1984). Cites articles and reproductions from 579 art publications throughout the world IHS from Westminster Reference Library
Benezit Dictionary of Artists Features 170,000 entries on artists from antiquity to the present day 24/7
Burlington Magazine Index  Indexing and content from the fine arts magazine from 1903 to 1992 IHS from Westminster Reference Library
Design and Applied Arts Index  Abstracts and bibliographic records for articles, news items, and reviews published in design and applied arts periodicals from 1973 IHS from Westminster Reference Library
Fashion Monitor Find contacts, news and events for the fashion and beauty industry IHS from Westminster Reference Library
John Johnson Collection 65,000 items of printed ephemera particularly focusing on advertising and 19th century entertainment materials 24/7
Oxford Art Combines Grove Art (45,000 articles) with the Oxford Companion to Western Art, the Encyclopaedia of Aesthetics and the Concise Oxford Dictionary of Art Terms 24/7

4. Biography

Title Description More information
Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (ODNB) The most authoritative collection of British biographies 24/7
Who's Who and Who Was Who Directory of the noteworthy and influential, plus 100,000+ entries from the archives dating back to 1898 24/7

5. Books

Title Description More information
Ebooks from Askew Holt Free downloadable books for library members 24/7 - use the ebooks page to sign up
Audiobooks from OneClickdigital Free downloadable audiobooks for library members 24/7 - use the audiobooks page to sign up
London Review of Books Full-text archive of articles from the British literary review from 1979 to date IHS from Marylebone Information Service

6. Business

Title Description More information
COBRA Complete business reference adviser, including opportunities, markets, financial and legal information 24/7
Experian MarketIQ In-depth company information including accounts, locations, directors, shareholders and products or services provided. Find out more IHS from Church Street, Paddington, Pimlico and Westminster Reference Library
HMRC Integrated Tariff Provides information on taxes payable to UK customs upon import or export of goods. IHS from Westminster Reference Library
IBISWorld Provides access to hundreds of UK Market & Industry reports, including key statistics, analysis, performance forecasts and major industry participants. Find out more. IHS from Church Street, Paddington, Pimlico and Westminster Reference Library
KOMPASS [Inside the library][Outside the library] Worldwide products and services directory, with detailed company information. 24/7
Marketline Advantage 
[Inside the library] [Outside the library]
In-depth information on companies and markets from around the world 24/7
Mintel Wide range of market research reports from a very highly regarded source IHS from Westminster Reference Library

7. Family history

Title Description More information
Ancestry Key records for family history research, including 1841 to 1911 census; birth, marriage and death records; street directories, telephone directories, school and military lists IHS from all libraries and on your own device via wifi within library buildings
Findmypast  Search for your family's history through UK records. IHS from all libraries and on your own device via wifi within library buildings

8. Law

Title Description More information
Westlaw Legal database of cases and legislation with access to legal journals, books and news IHS from Westminster Reference Library and Marylebone Information Service

9. Learning and careers

Title Description More information
Learning Nexus Computer and business skills for personal and small business use 24/7 - You must register at any Westminster library to use this resource

10. Music and performing arts

Title Description More information
International index to Performing Arts A database indexing performing arts magazines and journals, plus some full text articles 24/7
International Index to Music Periodicals Indexing and abstracts for several music journals and magazines, plus some full-text articles from ProQuest 24/7
Music Online Reference Music reference resources from Alexander Street Press including Classical, African American and World music, plus a scores library 24/7
Naxos Music Library 87,000 CDs from Naxos and other labels including classical, jazz, nostalgia, world and pop music 24/7
Oxford Music Online Combines Grove Music with the Encyclopedia of Popular Music, the Oxford Dictionary and Companion 24/7
White Book Directory of entertainment companies, artists and agents IHS from Westminster Reference Library

11. Newspapers and magazines

Title Description More information
Emagazines from Zinio Free downloadable magazines for library members 24/7 - please use the Zinio for first time users page to sign up.
The Economist Complete edition of the weekly paper covering politics, current affairs, business and trade, from 1843 to 2012


Financial Times Historical Archive Searchable archive of the daily financial newspaper from 1888 to 2010 24/7
The Guardian and Observer Searchable archive of these papers from 1791 to 2003 24/7
Illustrated London News Searchable facsimile archive of the magazine stretching from 1842 to 2003 24/7
Lancet Full text of the medical research journal from July 1996 with searchable index back to 1823 IHS from Marylebone Information Service
Library Press Display Newspapers from around the world, often online before the print edition 24/7
National Geographic Full archive of the magazine, from 1888 to date IHS from Marylebone Information Service
New African Online edition of the monthly African news and current affairs magazine with an archive dating back to 2007 IHS from Marylebone Information Service
News Vault Single search across several news databases (Economist, FT, Illustrated London News, Picture Post, Times) 24/7
Newsbank Archive of national and regional newspapers and magazines going from the current issue back several years 24/7
Picture Post Archive of the iconic photo-journalism magazine chronicling life in Britain throughout the Second World War and the years of austerity following it 24/7
The Times Digital Archive Archive of the Times covering 1785 to 2010 24/7
UK Press Online Fully-searchable facsimiles of the Daily Mirror from 1903 to the current issue. Also Daily and Sunday Express, and Daily Star 24/7
Zinio eMagazines Get full digital copies of a wide variety of current magazines for free on your computer, smartphone or tablet 24/7 - please use the Zinio for first time users page to sign up

12. Social issues

Title Description More information
Issues Online Aimed primarily at students wishing to gain a better understanding of the world around them and the issues which affect their lives, but useful to anyone researching social issues. 24/7

Last updated: 25 May 2016
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