'Don't muck it up' is the latest message about 24/7 opening
(13 May 2010)
Until 6 June 2010 the Main Library and Queen's Campus Library will be open 24/7. The first couple of weeks have already seen a lot of people using the libraries during the night and we've had some really positive feedback. The only issue we're regularly experiencing is antisocial use of library facilities by a minority of students, and the levels of rubbish being left in the library overnight. We are asking people to respect the library environment and recycle or dispose of their litter in the bins available throughout the library so they 'don't muck it up'.
Both libraries have details about where food and drink can be consumed when using the Library, information can be found on posters and on the Library 24/7 web pages. At the moment there is growing concern over where people are eating and drinking in the Library and the amount of litter being left behind. We've had feedback from people using the library that those ignoring the rules are making the study spaces unpleasant for everyone else. We've also had reports about unacceptable behaviour in the male toilets. This antisocial behaviour is leaving a mess that makes the toilets unusable, which inconveniences students and is unfair for cleaners and caretakers to deal with on a daily basis.
The library is trialling Library 24/7 in response to student comments in previous National Student Surveys. Extended opening during exam term will be reviewed at the end of the year to see if 24/7 is something that will be repeated in future. As well as monitoring demand, decisions about opening 24/7 in future will be based on cost and also the way the Library is being used overnight. If we continue to experience problems with the levels of litter and a lack of respect for library facilities then we may be unable to open 24/7 in future, even if we're happy about other factors such as popularity of the service.
In addition to the litter problem, some feedback so far has highlighted welfare concerns of staff and students. Before Library 24/7 was launched we worked with DSU and Nightline to address these. You can find out more about your health & safety while using 24/7 and the service Nightline provides on our web pages at http://www.dur.ac.uk/library/247/information/#safety