ONCE more a New Year, after a year of dramatic public events, finds librarians as other people settling down to what it is hoped will be twelve months of peace and prosperity. It is really remarkable how libraries reflect the happenings of the time; it would not, for example, seem that the burning of the Crystal Palace would affect the issues of all South London libraries but it did very heavily for a day or two. When the public mind is occupied with an idea it is well known that this is reflected in reduced, and occasionally increased, issues. The Jubilee of King George V. reduced reference issues everywhere; and it is to be expected that the Coronation of King George VI. will have a like effect. These efforts however are transient, and are only felt during the few days of the happenings in question.. On the larger count we find at the beginning of 1937 that all but new libraries have now reached a position in which they can assess the results of other competition. It is alleged that the loss of readers who have seceded to the “twopennies” is about 4 per cent. on the peak year of 1932–3, but the gains are considerably in advance of 1930. That is to say, solid progress has been regular.
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