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United Kingdom Law: Home

Purpose of this guide

This guide is intended for students and researchers studying the law and legal systems of the United Kingdom at the University of Oxford, although students and researchers from any field may find it useful.

Use this guide to find out about sources and commentary for the jurisdictions of the United Kingdom (England and Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland) including ebooks, ejournals, and databases.

Introduction to the main collection

Picture of the main reading room in the Bodleian Law LibraryThe UK hard copy collection in the Bodleian Law Library is mostly situated on the main floor of the library.  Law reports are at Cw UK 100, and journals at Cw UK 300.  UK legal monographs are catalogued using different classmarks which allows for easier browsing, this section starts at K through to KZ before the main run of law reports and journals.  Hard copy legislation can be found on Floor 1.

There is a multi-volume encyclopaedia which covers the law of England and Wales called Halsbury's Laws of England which is a great place to start your research and this can be found at K1 or it is available online on Lexis®Library.  Alternatively you can search SOLO for other resources.

There is no one database that contains all UK legal material but the 2 main databases are Westlaw Edge UK and LexisLibrary OU members can access both using their Oxford Single Sign On details.  For information on these, and for a list of other useful electronic resources (including free resources) then see the database section in the left hand column or look at the specific tab above for specific types of material.

UK Jurisdictions

This guide is mainly concerned with law which applies in the jurisdiction of England and Wales. Those elements which are United Kingdom law will apply also to Scotland and Northern Ireland. Depending on your research focus you might find the guides below useful.

Main UK legal databases

There are a number of major legal databases that cover UK law.  See below for a list of the main databases or see the Legal databases tab for more information and links to online tutorials.

UK Legal Research books

Below are books on legal research.  For books and resources on the English and Wales legal system see the Legal System tab.