Answered By: Ewan McCubbin
Last Updated: Aug 25, 2015     Views: 76

Thanks for your recent feedback.  I’ll answer your 5 points in turn:

1.       Heating – sorry you’ve been finding it cold.  We did have some problems with the air conditioning a few weeks ago but I wasn’t aware of particular problems more recently.  Our staff don’t actually have control over the heating in the building and therefore have to report problems to Estates.  In order to do this, we require specific information about where the problem is and when it is occurring.  I’d encourage you in future to speak to a member of staff as soon as you are experiencing problems with the temperature, letting them know which part of the building you’re in.

2.       Biology journals – this is helpful feedback but of course there are many publications available for subscription so it’s difficult to get you what you need unless we have more precise information.  Please back to us with specific detail and we’ll do our best to help.  There are a number of ways you can do this – email,, speak to a member of staff at the Helpdesk or contact as Vicki is the Academic Librarian with responsibility for this discipline.

3.       24/7 opening  - as you say, we did try 24 hour opening last year but I’m afraid despite great enthusiasm from students for the idea of 24/7, this did not translate into usage.  We saw relatively steady figures until 2.30/3.00am but between then at 9am, figures were very low and often dropped to under 10 people.  Given that we have to meet the cost of having 2 members of staff on duty, additional cleaning support and heat and light the building, it’s difficult to justify opening all night with such low figures.  We are of course always open to doing this again should there be sufficient demand but our current strategy with opening hours is to invest more in other areas – e.g. trying to move to an 8am-2am operation in the Main Library 7 days a week during semester and maintaining our recently extended hours during vacation periods.

4.       Power sockets – there are around 265 seats without power on the upper floors and these study seats were created during the second phase of our redevelopment project in 2012 by removing print stock and relocating it into storage.  Unlike the first stage of the refurbishment project in 2011 which allowed for the introduction of a raised floor on level 2, we were financially unable to introduce the same facility on the upper floors.  A raised floor essentially allows for power to be deployed to desks all over the footprint including the middle of the floor.  Because there isn’t a raised floor, power could only be increased in the areas in which it already existed – i.e. the perimeter.  We have asked Estates engineers to investigate the options for brining power to these desks on levels 3 and 4 but it’s not clear at this stage what may be possible.

5.       Stationery vending machine – we have been asked about this before but our view at the moment is that demand is insufficient to justify the floor space such a machine would take up.

Thanks again for your comments.

Best wishes

Ewan McCubbin (Assistant Director)