Thursday, 28 June 2012

Pimms O'Clock...

So, I've been feeling a little blogged out lately but thankfully the jet lag has now finally worn off and I'm back and still every bit as determined to complete as many of the 23 Things as I can!

It's been a busy couple of weeks at work. I've welcomed the chance to continue to feed back some of the research I undertook in the US. I have been able to contribute to the Ask a Librarian/virtual chat project which I mentioned in a previous post and to a two day Loans Review which looked in depth at our circulation system and summarised our first year as an Ex Libris library. It was really interesting to hear other staff members' opinions on fines and invoicing procedures, in particular and hopefully there will opportunities to put some of these productive ideas into practice in the near future. With so many conflicting commitments during the academic year, the Review also provided a rare opportunity staff from all areas of the library to get together, bringing me neatly to
Thing 7 and Professional Networks.

Having rejoined CILIP recently, I've put my name down for a couple of upcoming events, including a visit to a prison library next week which I'm expecting to be something of an eye-opener as it occurs to me that I've never seen the inside of a prison before. This despite my multitudinous nefarious exploits and rather flagrant misuse of the CILIP logo above. Yikes! I've said way too much.. As far as furthering my involvement with CILIP goes (assuming I'm not ex-communicated for logo policy infringement!) I am at the stage where I'd be looking to register for Chartership soon and am just trying to track down a suitable mentor.

Another network I have been made aware of through CPD23 Things is The Library Society of the World which includes some good information on the importance of library visits and conferences. The forum (which has moved) is centred around American libraries, in truth, rather than providing a truly global messageboard but there is some good stuff in there too. I spotted a job ad for a post in Wisconsin, for example (tempting!).

On Monday I was down at SW19 for the tennis, which (along with libraries - naturally) is the other main obsession in my life! It's a little known fact but Wimbledon has it's own library. It's hidden away in the Museum building and is a great resource with books, annuals and periodicals from over 100 different countries, all about tennis (& occasionally badminton or croquet). It is one of an increasingly rare breed of libraries resolutely refusing to digitise its content, serving* to make the resource all the more unique and intriguing. *Not an intentional tennis pun!

The library is open all year round but during 'The Fortnight' it is a resource exclusively for the press to use. Staff tell me they are kept busy with reporters phoning up to check they've got their facts straight. The librarians were also kind enough to let me take some photos of the collection which includes the first ever rule books for the game of Spheristike (the original name for tennis) from the 1880s, without which the game as we know it would simply never have existed...

The Wimbledon Library's helpdesk mainly fields
calls from journalists during The Championships

The library has a comprehensive collection of all books published on
 tennis from around the World, organised by country

'Throwing Rackets & Breaking Records' is a book from the Irish collection, charting a
doubles team's efforts to break the World Record for continuous play (some 36 hours!)

Night falls on the first day of Wimbledon 2012

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