As we are closed after today (Wednesday 27th) until next Tuesday, and as your humble blogger is off that week, I am posting the March edition of our News a couple of days early.
March has been a busy month, and not just in terms of reader numbers, which were quite high as the end of term approached, dropping off noticeably once the vacation started.
For one thing, we have now implemented Short Loans for the “Apply Staff” books, see previous post on this blog for details. One further comment on this, however: there was some confusion about readers with yellow cards which are reference only, and after a bit of experimentation we can happily say that we can loan Short Loan books to these types of card, although obviously only to be used in the Library. Overnight loans for readers with a reference only status would still not be allowed unless under exceptional circumstances and at the discretion of the librarian.
As well as this change, there has been the wider Bodleian Libraries change of policy over fines. Since March 18th we have been able to take payment of fines from any Bodleian Library, rather than just for our own. Some restrictions apply; for instance we would not be allowed to take payment for a lost book from another library, but we hope that this facility will make it easier for readers to clear any fines they have in one place, rather than wandering all over Oxford, and it is likely to be especially useful to final year students who need to pay off fines in order to graduate.
Meanwhile, back at OIL, we have a new member of staff in residence. Dr Gillian Evison, the head of the Oriental Section, has moved into the office behind the staircase after a reshuffle in the Central Bodleian. Anyone who was in the library last Friday may have encountered the movers, who were very professional, especially when it came to manipulating large and awkward pieces of furniture through our somewhat cramped front office without taking chunks out of the walls. We bid Gillian welcome to OIL, and hope that she settles in to her new home with as little drama as possible!
Finally, an update on the Window on Korea collection, which is still being catalogued and sent to the Library in manageable batches. The photos show the current state of the books awaiting processing, some as-yet-unpacked boxes, and the shelves downstairs at OIL which are slowly filling up both with the new books from the National Library of Korea and with older sets of Korean books which have been moved from the Book Storage Facility. Please do remember that, while the new books belong to OIL and are therefore able to be lent to readers, the books belonging to the Bodleian are still only to be used in the Library. They will have a “Ref.” prefix on their labels to make this distinction clear.
Phew! Well, I did say March had been busy! Anyway, Happy Easter to those of our readers who observe it, and to everyone else, enjoy a few days off!