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Article
Publication date: 1 February 1988

Jim Duvall

I would like to begin by taking a general look at the official publications of local authorities, not only at what they are, but also at who uses them and what they are…

Abstract

I would like to begin by taking a general look at the official publications of local authorities, not only at what they are, but also at who uses them and what they are actually used for. In addition, I would like to try to make a rough assessment of the recent attempts to increase access to them, particularly emphasising the positive improvements that have taken place over recent years — and also to try to identify the shortcomings that remain. In examining the changing patterns of the publication of information recently, we should not only look at developments such as the Access to Information Act and the abolition of the Metropolitan County Councils, but also take a wider view, examining, for instance, whether increasing emphasis on value for money techniques in individual local authorities and the aim for objective decision making has altered the information and documentary requirements of local government and the value placed on them. Finally, and most centrally, I would like to look at the existing role played by local government information services in this area, and perhaps speculate on what can be achieved in the future. I would like to approach this by making a number of key points and then, hopefully, we can discuss those you feel of most value. My contribution has the broad title ‘Local government information services’. David Mort of the Centre for Local Economic Strategies will take a look at the information services provided by outside organisations for local authorities. The distinction between our contributions is, I hope, fairly clear and I will attempt to restrict myself to discussing the information services provided by individual local authorities while David will look at the wider scene. There is, of course, a grey area of information services which do not fall exactly within the boundaries of this definition and I will very briefly mention a number of these later, but first it might be useful to begin by having a very brief word about our sponsors. This seminar is a joint venture by the Aslib Planning Environment and Transport Information Group (PETIG) and the Standing Committee on Official Publications (SCOOP). SCOOP was formally set up at the beginning of 1983 and is a direct descendant of the Library Association/HMSO Services Working Party which was established in 1971. It might be helpful if I briefly summarise a number of the formal arrangements under which SCOOP operates in order to set the context for my contribution. The Committee's principal aims relate to UK national and local government official publications and these are to improve access and availability to such documents, to identify and propose solutions to problems of access and to provide mechanisms for the exchange of views between members of the library community on matters of common interest concerning UK official publications.

Details

Aslib Proceedings, vol. 40 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0001-253X

Article
Publication date: 1 February 1991

Edwin Fleming should not be allowed to get away with his statement that “Much of the local government reputation for inefficiency is well deserved” (NLW, November 1990)…

Abstract

Edwin Fleming should not be allowed to get away with his statement that “Much of the local government reputation for inefficiency is well deserved” (NLW, November 1990). Where is his evidence of this?

Details

New Library World, vol. 92 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Article
Publication date: 1 January 1981

Clive Bingley, Edwin Fleming and Allan Bunch

THE WELCOME NEWS, late in November, that the government has finally given the go‐ahead to the first phase of building the new British Library headquarters at Somers Town…

Abstract

THE WELCOME NEWS, late in November, that the government has finally given the go‐ahead to the first phase of building the new British Library headquarters at Somers Town next to St Pancras railway station has reawakened the campaign by Professor Hugh Thomas and others to retain the Reading Room at the British Museum as the BL'S centre‐point. Professor Thomas wants the new building to be merely a warehouse for the book collections, and to have books ferried down to readers at Great Russell Street on demand.

Details

New Library World, vol. 82 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Article
Publication date: 1 September 1984

Edward Dudley, Edwin Fleming and Allan Bunch

The recent LISC discussion paper Basic professional education for library and information work spoke of the need to recruit ‘a number of potential innovators and high…

Abstract

The recent LISC discussion paper Basic professional education for library and information work spoke of the need to recruit ‘a number of potential innovators and high fliers … managers of new enterprises’, particularly those in the it field. Small LISC misery twinges, then, at the publication of Graduate supply and availability to 1986 by the Institute of Manpower Studies. Apparently there's a shortage of high flying graduates, characters with substantial personal drive and matching intellectual skills. What's worse is that the problem is sharpest among it graduates where a drop of 10% is expected in the next two years. So dreary old trad librarians may have a short reprieve from being flown over and innovated at.

Details

New Library World, vol. 85 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Article
Publication date: 1 January 1988

Edwin Fleming

I wish to examine one particular contradiction in the LA's Code in a little depth. As I write, two persons I know well who used a number of libraries, are now serving…

Abstract

I wish to examine one particular contradiction in the LA's Code in a little depth. As I write, two persons I know well who used a number of libraries, are now serving prison sentences. The first was convicted of manslaughter; he is young, very tall, and his only use of libraries was to read electoral registers together with the related telephone directory. At his trial ninety‐eight witnesses gave a picture of persons being tracked down by him and living in fear as a result. It has been claimed that because of paragraph hi in the Code, his activities in the library cannot be mentioned to the police as the Code here forbids members to divulge to a third party, material or information entrusted to them in confidence. The second is an undischarged bankrupt with superficial charm. He tried to sell a non‐existent directory he said he was “publishing” to a number of libraries at the end of 1984. He advertised for staff in the local job centre, and had a limited company. His legal credit limit was £10, yet he was convicted of obtaining £7,210 credit by fraud. One person's conduct is sometimes very destructive to the whole community!

Details

New Library World, vol. 89 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 January 1986

EDWIN FLEMING

The large scale and far reaching functions of local government in the United Kingdom today are eloquent proofs of the universal demand for local services of high quality…

Abstract

The large scale and far reaching functions of local government in the United Kingdom today are eloquent proofs of the universal demand for local services of high quality and wide coverage extending into almost every sector of life from literally the cradle to the grave. In the cities of Britain local government is often found to employ more people than any other single organisation. There are some 25,400 councillors in Britain and around 2,500,000 employees. The total expenditure of local authorities in England and Wales for 1984–85 was estimated at £24,323,000,000.1 The services provided include departments for development and planning, art galleries, libraries, museums, engineers, building surveyors, environmental health, architects, estate surveyors, housing, leisure and recreation, social services, economic development, education, transport, highways, trading standards, fire brigade, and police. In addition each local authority has departments mainly concerned with services to the other departments: the chief executive or secretary, personnel and management, solicitor, treasurer, and central purchasing services. Each of these departments has several important subdivisions, and clearly all require a constant inflow of information, and increasingly it is recognised local authorities generate large quantities of important information which can be used more widely with benefit within the authority, as well as outside.

Details

Library Review, vol. 35 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0024-2535

Article
Publication date: 1 October 1980

Clive Bingley, Edwin Fleming and Sarah Lawson

REGULAR READERS of this column will have noted, perhaps with relief, the self‐restraint I have applied in recent months in connection with the game of cricket, not a word…

Abstract

REGULAR READERS of this column will have noted, perhaps with relief, the self‐restraint I have applied in recent months in connection with the game of cricket, not a word about which have I imparted to you throughout the summer.

Details

New Library World, vol. 81 no. 10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Article
Publication date: 1 April 1979

Clive Bingley, Edwin Fleming and Sarah Lawson

I DON'T KNOW whether you are yet straight in your minds about the present location of the various parts of my erstwhile, present and embryonic business empires, but it…

Abstract

I DON'T KNOW whether you are yet straight in your minds about the present location of the various parts of my erstwhile, present and embryonic business empires, but it will certainly clear my mind of confusion if I try to set it down here once and for all—and you are welcome to photocopy it (without comeback) for the edification of your colleagues!

Details

New Library World, vol. 80 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Article
Publication date: 1 December 1979

Clive Bingley, Edwin Fleming and Sarah Lawson

CHRISTMAS is coming, and the year is nearly done. On the whole, a good year, I think—at any rate for realism. No doubt we shall have our (by now) customary industrial fun…

Abstract

CHRISTMAS is coming, and the year is nearly done. On the whole, a good year, I think—at any rate for realism. No doubt we shall have our (by now) customary industrial fun and games during the winter, with lights going out, rubbish piling up in the streets, and the car‐workers continuing to perform their slow‐motion, ritual suicide. But it is becoming appreciated that inflationary, pay increases simply spawn unemployment.

Details

New Library World, vol. 80 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Article
Publication date: 1 August 1982

Clive Bingley, Allan Bunch and Edwin Fleming

I THOUGHT, shall I write a vigorously reproving letter to John Saunders, County Librarian of Surrey, or shall I fulminate in public instead? As you would expect, I chose…

Abstract

I THOUGHT, shall I write a vigorously reproving letter to John Saunders, County Librarian of Surrey, or shall I fulminate in public instead? As you would expect, I chose the latter.

Details

New Library World, vol. 83 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

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