You must seek permission(s) if you intend to reproduce any text or other intellectual property that is protected by copyright – unless your intended use qualifies as fair dealing.*

In the United Kingdom, the standard term of copyright in original text is 70 years beyond its author’s death, or 70 years from date of first publication if posthumous. Unless either copyright has expired or your intended usage qualifies as fair dealing, you must request formal permission from the publishers who control rights in whatever material you intend to exploit.

Penguin Random House UK is typically able to grant permission for use of material taken from books first published by one of the following, as detailed in the imprint page of their editions:-

Penguin Books Ltd.

The Random House Group Ltd.

Dorling Kindersley Ltd.

Rough Guides Ltd.

Please check that one of the above was the original publisher of a given title before contacting us for permission.

* Includes usage that is strictly personal, or for non-publication scholarly exploitation, or of short extracts (fewer than c.300 words) for criticism. See here for general guidance concerning fair dealing.

Requesting Permission

We cannot grant permission without having received a corresponding request form including details of:

  • name, address and invoicing address for the prospective licensee
  • VAT number if an European company is the prospective licensee
  • ISBN of a specific Penguin (UK) edition
  • word- (prose) or line- (poetry) count
  • a sufficient description of the context in which our material will appear and wider details of your project, including the publisher, intended print runterritoryformats, proposed retail pricepublication date, and pagination.

Once complete, send your form to the appropriate permissions team (below), citing the title of our publication in the subject field of your email. Misdirecting your request or omitting required information will prolong the processing time.

Penguin Books Ltd.                           

Allen Lane

Fig Tree

Hamish Hamilton

Michael Joseph


Pelican, Penguin

Penguin Classics

Penguin General

Penguin Ireland

Penguin Life

Penguin Press



and all adults’ DK titles and all Rough Guides titles




Frederick Warne & Co.

and all children’s DK titles                                                                     
BBC Children’s Books


The Snowman and The Snowdog

Frederick Warne & Co.

and all ‘Spot’ titles

The Random House Group Ltd.



BBC Books

Black Swan

The Bodley Head


Chatto & Windus




Harvill Secker



Jonathan Cape

Square Peg



William Heinemann





We endeavour to provide an initial response within 8 weeks of receiving your request. Please do not send chaser emails or duplicate requests.

Permissions for commercial use are typically subject to a fee. Always indicate your company’s VAT number when initially sending your request form.

Please note:

  • Penguin Random House UK operates separately to Penguin Random House USA. If your request concerns work published by an imprint of Penguin Random House USA, please refer to their permissions portal at

  • We can only license permission to reproduce and feature covers that have a Penguin Random House UK ISBN; we cannot grant permissions for Penguin Random House USA ISBNs.

  • Permission may be delayed if the author or author’s estate and/or their agent are required to approve individual requests.

  • If you are seeking to reproduce material from an anthology, please contact the original copyright and/or rights holder for that material as indicated in the edition’s acknowledgements.

  • Most books can be copied for classroom use at schools, colleges and universities within the UK under the terms of the Copyright Licensing Agency (CLA); see

  • If our edition does not indicate an ISBN, please attach a photocopy of its imprint page to your initial email in lieu.

  • If seeking a request from a translated title, please ensure that you have permission from the rights holder in the original language, as well as the translated version.


In cases of specific authors:

George Orwell: The Random House Group Ltd. controls PRINT rights in select titles only, and Penguin Books Ltd. controls DIGITAL rights in select titles only. Therefore please approach Random House for PRINT permissions and Penguin for DIGITAL permissions, or both if necessary.

Roald Dahl: please refer all text requests to David Higham Associates.

John Steinbeck: These requests are likely to take some time to procees as they must always be approved by both the estate and the agent. Please consider this before requesting permission to reuse any text by Steinbeck.

Virginia Woolf: please refer all requests to Random House, not Penguin.

Using extracts in a classroom

Most books can be copied for use in a UK school, college or university under the Copyright Licensing Agency (CLA) License.  For more information visit