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The Shallow end

The Shallow end READERS OF this column will acknow­ graduate and post-graduate librarians cisms and suggestions which seem, to a who, somewhat like members of the disinterested observer, valid and ledge that there are few observers armed services, will be readily available worthwhile. On lack of communica­ around these days more disinterested, in good numbers should the need for tion between staff and readers, for or hollow, than Shallow. This not only them ever arise again. example, it says: 'Many students do guarantees unbiased commentaries on this page, but should also ensure that The likelihood of that, so far as not realise that the new books in the Teaching Library as well as the Main no-one is offended—which is now our public libraries are concerned, is Library are catalogued only on micro­ sublime object. remote: 1,268 fewer librarians will be fiche; more information is needed . . . employed in that sector in 1981-1982 In this spirit, I should like to com­ there is a new microfiche catalogue ment on three documents which have than in the year 1976-1977. During the same period, 472 libraries have closed kept at the enquiries desk for the come to hand recently. The first is the Senate House catalogue; not many stu­ and thirty mobile libraries have been Leeds Polytechnic School of Librarian- dents know about this . . . there is an taken off the road. These facts are ship's Annual report 1980-81. absence of easily available directions contained in the second document I It is a very inspiring tract for the on the use of the catalogue.' have been looking at—Public library times. From humble beginnings in 1947 spending in England and Wales, pub­ —one teacher and twenty students Suggestions regarding the expansion lished by the National Book Committee aiming for ALA or FLA—the school has of the Teaching Library and its pos­ recently, but undated. Included among prospered to an establishment of sible re-location, the improvement of the sponsors are several publishers' twenty-five teachers, eleven ancillaries lighting, and the provision of a vending associations, the Booksellers Associa­ and 250 full-time equivalent students machine in an unused foyer, appear tion, the Society of Authors and the aiming for various academic initials. sound. Library Association. The Leeds Library School has just On the other hand, pity the librarian moved into the former campus of two Although this pamphlet deals with faced with this rigmarole about the colleges of education 'which, in the total public library expenditure, its Main Library: chief concern is, understandably, the wake of teacher education cuts and a 'Many students do most of their amounts spent on books—'the pro­ merger with the Polytechnic in the work in the evenings. The Main mid-1970s, has had a considerable sur­ vision of which is the raison d'être of Library shuts as early as 9.20 pm and plus of accommodation'. It's an ill the library service'. many students may not even be able to wind . . . There is 'a substantial com­ stay that long. Any argument for Three cut-of-the-cake diagrams illus­ puter terminal facility' in the suite of keeping the Main Library open later is trate the proportions of total public rooms in which the school's Study and always countered with the argument library expenditure allocated to books Demonstration Library 'is attractively that the Library staff would not be able in the years 1966-1967, 1979-1980 and housed'. There is also a large Site to get home late at night. Students, 1981-1982 (estimate). The slices for Library. too, face this problem and may not feel books shrink from a reasonable safe on tubes, buses and trains even as The campus (shared with three other twenty-four percent chunk, to a seven­ early as 9.00 pm.' schools) includes 'eighty acres or so of teen percent piece and finally to a parkland'. It also offers 'the splendid grudging fifteen percent sliver. Now what, on behalf of the many sports facilities associated with the students who beaver away in the A parallel series of diagrams show­ School of Physical Education, and 800 evenings, is this part of the report ing the changing proportions of total or so study bedrooms in the Halls of asking for? Is it (a) later closing (b) expenditure allocated to staff over the Residence'. earlier closing (c) bodyguards (d) a same period, is conspicuously absent. But it is not all bluebells in the park­ mail order book service (e) bed and Obviously, the National Book Com­ land and trampolining on the sports breakfast. mittee made a sound tactical decision facilities up there. 'The need to adjust The answer appears several pages there. The appearance of increasing to cuts, squeezes and freezes has on, in the Conclusion. They want the salary slabs alongside decreasing book become so much a way of life that library open earlier in the mornings. slices would have impelled the events which ten or even five years ago pamphlet straight into many a libra­ would be regarded as major disasters rian's wastepaper basket. Robert Shallow now hardly rate more than a passing Shortage of books figures largely in sigh.' the third document. This is a London Two consequences of financial cut­ School of Economics Student Union ting and squeezing are cited. First, 'the Executive report on the library, withdrawal of a study tour of the prepared by Katrina Sarlvik, Melanie major national libraries from the BA Nazareth and Andre Brown. Alleged (Librarianship) programme'. Second, shortcomings of librarians figure 'a reduction of post-graduate bursaries equally largely. It should be recom­ from twenty-four to twenty for the mended reading at all library schools. ensuing year'. As the report empha­ This is not to say that it is a good sises, 'expenditure cuts bite hard'. report. It is muddled, occasionally un- grammatical and totally self-righteous Yet Leeds is, no doubt, typical of our schools of librarianship in its —typical, some might say, of any perseverance. They will continue, group of library users. despite all difficulties, to turn out It does, however, make some criti­ http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png New Library World Emerald Publishing

The Shallow end

New Library World , Volume 83 (4): 1 – Apr 1, 1982

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN
0307-4803
DOI
10.1108/eb038568
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

READERS OF this column will acknow­ graduate and post-graduate librarians cisms and suggestions which seem, to a who, somewhat like members of the disinterested observer, valid and ledge that there are few observers armed services, will be readily available worthwhile. On lack of communica­ around these days more disinterested, in good numbers should the need for tion between staff and readers, for or hollow, than Shallow. This not only them ever arise again. example, it says: 'Many students do guarantees unbiased commentaries on this page, but should also ensure that The likelihood of that, so far as not realise that the new books in the Teaching Library as well as the Main no-one is offended—which is now our public libraries are concerned, is Library are catalogued only on micro­ sublime object. remote: 1,268 fewer librarians will be fiche; more information is needed . . . employed in that sector in 1981-1982 In this spirit, I should like to com­ there is a new microfiche catalogue ment on three documents which have than in the year 1976-1977. During the same period, 472 libraries have closed kept at the enquiries desk for the come to hand recently. The first is the Senate House catalogue; not many stu­ and thirty mobile libraries have been Leeds Polytechnic School of Librarian- dents know about this . . . there is an taken off the road. These facts are ship's Annual report 1980-81. absence of easily available directions contained in the second document I It is a very inspiring tract for the on the use of the catalogue.' have been looking at—Public library times. From humble beginnings in 1947 spending in England and Wales, pub­ —one teacher and twenty students Suggestions regarding the expansion lished by the National Book Committee aiming for ALA or FLA—the school has of the Teaching Library and its pos­ recently, but undated. Included among prospered to an establishment of sible re-location, the improvement of the sponsors are several publishers' twenty-five teachers, eleven ancillaries lighting, and the provision of a vending associations, the Booksellers Associa­ and 250 full-time equivalent students machine in an unused foyer, appear tion, the Society of Authors and the aiming for various academic initials. sound. Library Association. The Leeds Library School has just On the other hand, pity the librarian moved into the former campus of two Although this pamphlet deals with faced with this rigmarole about the colleges of education 'which, in the total public library expenditure, its Main Library: chief concern is, understandably, the wake of teacher education cuts and a 'Many students do most of their amounts spent on books—'the pro­ merger with the Polytechnic in the work in the evenings. The Main mid-1970s, has had a considerable sur­ vision of which is the raison d'être of Library shuts as early as 9.20 pm and plus of accommodation'. It's an ill the library service'. many students may not even be able to wind . . . There is 'a substantial com­ stay that long. Any argument for Three cut-of-the-cake diagrams illus­ puter terminal facility' in the suite of keeping the Main Library open later is trate the proportions of total public rooms in which the school's Study and always countered with the argument library expenditure allocated to books Demonstration Library 'is attractively that the Library staff would not be able in the years 1966-1967, 1979-1980 and housed'. There is also a large Site to get home late at night. Students, 1981-1982 (estimate). The slices for Library. too, face this problem and may not feel books shrink from a reasonable safe on tubes, buses and trains even as The campus (shared with three other twenty-four percent chunk, to a seven­ early as 9.00 pm.' schools) includes 'eighty acres or so of teen percent piece and finally to a parkland'. It also offers 'the splendid grudging fifteen percent sliver. Now what, on behalf of the many sports facilities associated with the students who beaver away in the A parallel series of diagrams show­ School of Physical Education, and 800 evenings, is this part of the report ing the changing proportions of total or so study bedrooms in the Halls of asking for? Is it (a) later closing (b) expenditure allocated to staff over the Residence'. earlier closing (c) bodyguards (d) a same period, is conspicuously absent. But it is not all bluebells in the park­ mail order book service (e) bed and Obviously, the National Book Com­ land and trampolining on the sports breakfast. mittee made a sound tactical decision facilities up there. 'The need to adjust The answer appears several pages there. The appearance of increasing to cuts, squeezes and freezes has on, in the Conclusion. They want the salary slabs alongside decreasing book become so much a way of life that library open earlier in the mornings. slices would have impelled the events which ten or even five years ago pamphlet straight into many a libra­ would be regarded as major disasters rian's wastepaper basket. Robert Shallow now hardly rate more than a passing Shortage of books figures largely in sigh.' the third document. This is a London Two consequences of financial cut­ School of Economics Student Union ting and squeezing are cited. First, 'the Executive report on the library, withdrawal of a study tour of the prepared by Katrina Sarlvik, Melanie major national libraries from the BA Nazareth and Andre Brown. Alleged (Librarianship) programme'. Second, shortcomings of librarians figure 'a reduction of post-graduate bursaries equally largely. It should be recom­ from twenty-four to twenty for the mended reading at all library schools. ensuing year'. As the report empha­ This is not to say that it is a good sises, 'expenditure cuts bite hard'. report. It is muddled, occasionally un- grammatical and totally self-righteous Yet Leeds is, no doubt, typical of our schools of librarianship in its —typical, some might say, of any perseverance. They will continue, group of library users. despite all difficulties, to turn out It does, however, make some criti­

Journal

New Library WorldEmerald Publishing

Published: Apr 1, 1982

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