Show me some more late-night library love

— Rose Forman, a third-year politics student at the University of Lincoln, contributed with this entry

Imagine the scene: it’s almost 2am on a Wednesday night. You’re sitting in the library, so close to the Engine Shed you can almost feel the carefree, drunken party-goers. But more importantly, you’re getting your essay done!

Everyone knows that students are nocturnal, everyone except the University of Lincoln, apparently. The luxury and convenience of the 24/4 (that is 24 hours 4 days a week) library is not always available.


Monday, April 12th, sees the start of a two-week period of a 24-hour library service for four days of each week. Photo: Shane Croucher

And as a third-year myself, I can’t tell you how frustrated I was to find out that the library was not open 24 hours over the Easter holidays. That all-important fortnight before dissertation hand-in, when you finally realise that the library is not just a storage facility for books and it can actually be useful.

I’m sure I’m not alone in saying that my best ideas come at ten to midnight, but that’s no use if the library isn’t available to us in our time of need.

In one of my many recent, late-night stints in the library I was given a questionnaire on student opinions of the library. According to the helpful librarian there’s some spare cash floating about and they would like to know how students feel they should spend it, so clearly they have the resources available.

Chris Charnley, the Students’ Union president, keeps advocating the 24 hour library, stating in his manifesto again this year that he wants it open longer. However, the most effective use would be 24/4 all year round. Other university libraries manage it and it would be a massive asset to the university as a whole.

The 24/4 library works well. Go in at 3am next time and you’ll see the proof — there’ll be students there using and appreciating it.

4 Responses to Show me some more late-night library love

  1. Jonathan Holmes says:

    I agree it does work well, however despite there being a bit of cash available, there isn’t nearly the amount required to open it 24/4 all year round.

    Remember that the university has had massive budget cuts this year! As I understand it, the amount of funding we get is partly related to the standards of graduates we produce. At the moment, it isn’t deemed to be high enough for extra funding which leads to the catch 22 situation of less income, meaning less higher quality graduates etc. Someone feel free to correct me if I’m wrong.

    I’m sure it will happen again next year, and hopefully for a little longer too.

  2. Huseyin Kishi says:

    I’d argue with the self-service machines downstairs, and the CCTV available, that surely the library can be manned by the students, and as long as there’s an agreement, by which you return the books you were using to the shelf and order you found them, you’d only need to think of utility costs.

    Yes, there has been budget cuts, but there has been an increase in students as well. Also, considering University is primarily about independent study, I see no reason why a maintained student co-operative can’t be maintained providing a contract of sorts, is met and agreed with.

    So yes we can have a 24 hour library, however I doubt we shall see this implemented by the current SU president.

  3. Ian Snowley says:

    I’m pleased that the 24/4 opening of the University Library is proving popular and agree that we should offer extended hours for a longer period. We are working on that for next year, and funds permitting hope to open 24/4 for at least 3 months of the year — double this year’s offering.

    Given limited funds this year we wanted to provide the extended hours when they would benefit most students – and consulted the SU and faculties on this. As a result we decided to offer extended hours for two weeks before and two weeks after Easter. In fact last week was fairly quiet during the day, so that feels like it was the right decision.

    Just to say the ‘funds’ that were mentioned by one of my colleagues mentioned are fairly small and wouldn’t cover the costs of additional extended opening – and of course we do need to buy new books, journals and e-resources as well, in order to keep the collection relevant!

    Ian Snowley
    University Librarian

  4. Charlotte Reid says:

    The University of Lincoln has actually received an increase in funding from the Higher Education Funding Council, despite fears of a slash in budgets as we reported earlier in the year. http://thelinc.co.uk/vztbx