The origin of London’s place names

London Underground sign“Turn left at Elephant and Castle and go straight on to Gilder’s Green…” London is replete with curious place names but have you ever wondered how they came about and what they originally meant?  Many have mundane meanings, while others reveal little glimpses into London’s past, such as King’s Cross, where George IV unveiled a cross-shaped monument, demolished only a few years after his death.

Click here for the origins of more unusual London Underground tube stop names.


Image (cc) Elliot Brown via Flickr

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Time to Talk Day (1st February 2018)

Time to Talk DayThursday 1st February is Time to Talk Day: an annual day that brings the nation together to get talking and break the silence around mental health problems, launched by Time to Change.  Both the University and Student Union have signed the pledge with Time to Change to end mental health stigma and there will be events across campus at all UoP Halls of Residence, the Library, Eldon building, Portland building and the Student Union from 11.30 am – 3:00 pm.

Let’s change the way we all think and act about mental health.  Come along to find out more, make a pledge, and try various activities.  Wherever you are, talk about mental health this Time to Talk Day.

We hope university will be one of the best experiences of your life! But we also know it has its ups and downs and it can be tough!  In case you do have any issues, the Union’s Advice and University Wellbeing services are both here to help, and can signpost you to other services.

If you would like to know more, contact the Union Advice Service on

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Publications finder not working properly

A problem has occurred with the publication finder search in the Discovery Service.  Susbcription dates and links to content are not displaying properly.  The supplier are working hard to resolve it.  We apologize for any inconvenience.

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New photography exhibition: images of Cambodia

Take a break and while away a few moments enjoying the new photography exhibition by Anju Limbu, now on the first floor landing outside Area 1B.

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Swipe right for a year of English language evolution

Image of dictionary definition of Language evolves and dictionaries with it – we can only wonder what changes in the meaning of common, everyday words we might find were we to crack open the carefully preserved dictionaries hiding in the Rare Books room.

If you are interested in finding out, please ask a member of library staff.  You can read, photograph pages in any of our rare books (though sadly not borrow because rare books are often a little fragile and, well, rare) and many of them are absolutely fascinating, from illustrated works by luminary artist and poet William Blake to editions of the Oxford English Dictionary that might be older than you.  You can find the full list of rare book collections we hold under “Resources > Special Collections” on the Library website.

Even the year just gone has seen sweeping changes to the English language, as described on – tap or click here for details.

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EBSCO ebook platform enhancements

EBSCO have made some improvements to their ebook platform that mean you can now:

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Resolved: Researcher login to PURE temporarily unavailable

Update 23.01.18 – PURE is working normally again.  Thank you for your patience.
We have received notification that PURE users are unable to connect to the system.  Information Services are currently investigating the problem and will advise when users are once again able to log into PURE.  The Portsmouth Research Portal appears unaffected.
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Resolved: Ebook Central ebooks unavailable to read online

Update 22.01.17 – Normal service has been restored.  It is once again possible to read all our ebooks online.  Thank you for your patience.
Online reading access to Ebook Central is temporarily unavailable.  Institutions across the country are similarly affected.  The supplier is working to remedy this as soon as possible.


You can currently download some, though unfortunately not all, ebooks before opening them in the reader screen.  Click the “Full download” button to download a copy of the ebook to read.
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Resolved: Intermittent problem accessing EBSCO e-resources (including EBSCO ebooks and the Discovery Service)

Update 25.01.17 – This problem has been resolved, although a similar problem limited to the electronic journals publications search appears to have recurred today.  This has been reported under a separate service status update.  We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause you and thank you for your ongoing patience.  EBSCO are working hard to resolve these problems.

There is an intermittent problem with EBSCO e-resources, including EBSCO ebooks, the electronic journals Publications Search (available through the Discovery Service), and the Discovery Service itself.  If you receive an error message advising that an electronic resource provided by EBSCO is unavailable, this might be the reason.  This problem is intermittent and so if you cannot access an electronic resource at one time, you might be able to access it later on.  EBSCO are aware and working to solve this problem.  We apologise to all those affected.

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Advertisements appearing in Library website search results

When searching the Library website itself – not Discovery or any of our other information resources – we regret you may now see adverts appearing at the top of your search results list.  The advert free search that Google used to provide has been discontinued; we are now looking for an alternative without adverts.  All the advertisements may be easily identified by the “Ad” appearing in a box.  All other search results are from our website.
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