Missing books cost council £20,000 every single year

Library book losses cost thousands
Library book losses cost thousands

West Lothian Council is taking steps to reduce the number of items that go missing from its libraries.

On average, 150 items go missing each month from libraries which cost the council over £20,000 last year.

To reduce the amount of items going missing and improve the service for customers, the council has made a number of changes.

From April 1, customers are now only able to check out up to 10 items at any one time – previously the limit was 20 items.

From the same date, customers who are late in returning items will not be charged a fee. Instead, customers will have the opportunity to replace any lost or misplaced items without having to pay a penalty. However, customers who fail to return items or provide a replacement within one month, will be sent an invoice for the full value.

Karen Cawte, customer services development manager, said: “We have 15 public libraries in West Lothian and they each offer a wide variety of books and other items.

‘‘Over the years, we have invested heavily to ensure we continue to provide customers with a selection of good quality books, DVDS and other items.

‘‘With over 15,000 items being checked out each month, we understand that, unfortunately, some items get lost or misplaced.

‘‘Rather than charging a penalty we are simply asking customers to hand in a replacement copy of the same item.’’

For more information visit www.westlothian.gov.uk