AT the time this appears about ten per cent of the librarians of this country will be studying how best to profit by the Hastings conference at the end of the month. The town itself is interesting, the old and new being combined in a quite graciously intriguing manner, and the library service there is worthy of attention. We say that pointedly because the pressure of these meetings is so great that the library of the place, the local example of all librarians stand for, is, by the majority, not even visited. In our October issue we hope to give an impression, at any rate a preliminary one, of the proceedings. From the advance notices, which are all that are as yet available, they are to revolve somewhat loosely round staff, stock, and standards, which can be made to cover the whole of librarianship, so that we need not descant upon its importance or pretend that it presents any original subject. Its treatment we hope will be so, as the most ordinary library topic is an old one, but fresh light upon it is always possible. The speakers appear to be all librarians of relatively small libraries and, as these comprise 75% at least of public libraries, there can be no quarrel with that. The new chairman of the L.A. Education Committee, Mr. W. B. Paton, is to look again at the pressing question of staff recruitment and training; we know he will look with clear eyes at a real problem. The Annual Lecture will be by Sir Ben Bowen Thomas, who is Permanent Secretary of the Welsh Department of the Ministry of Education. There will be the usual section meetings, annual dinner, and exhibition. We may be sure that the Presidential Address will be characteristic of Mr. C. B. Oldman, which means that it will be a scholarly reflection of many or some of his wide range of library interests; and also that, under his guidance, the whole conference will be managed well.
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