Income from library fines and lost/damaged items

Why we charge for overdue and lost/damaged items

Charging for overdue and lost or damaged items is common practice across the Higher Education library sector. It ensures library stock is used effectively and fairly for the benefit of the whole user community. It is not our intention to penalise for non-returned items, and several measures are in place to help users to manage their library accounts. This includes courtesy and overdue notices and unlimited online renewals.

We try to recover the cost of lost/damaged books so we can replace them.

Library income from overdue and lost/damaged items

Income from fines and charges
YearIncome
2014-15 £128,013
2013-14 £125,800
2012-13 £115,778
2011-12 £124,213

These figures include overdue and lost/damaged items. The income is from students, academic staff and external users.

The 2014-15 total averages £6.03 per library user.

How we use the money received through fines

Money received through fines is kept by the Library to support services important to students, including the purchase of books and journals, and for extending library opening hours.

Total overdue and lost/damaged books

29,855 items were recorded as overdue, lost or damaged during 2014-15.

For context, during 2014-15 the libraries loaned/renewed 1,364,338 items (to all categories of user). This means that 2.18% of our total loans were subject to charges.

Individual and large fines

Fines and charges are listed on our library fines page. Users are advised of any sums that are accruing in their library account.

Individual fines are only calculated once an item has been returned or formally recorded as lost or damaged.

Large fines are always reviewed by library supervisory staff on a case by case basis, and are adjusted or cleared according to any mitigating circumstances.

We do not record the amounts ultimately charged to users and paid by them. This information is recorded through individual cash transaction processes.

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