Leeds library is most popular in the region and seventh most visited in UK

02-11-2010

Leeds Central Library is the region’s most popular library, and the UK’s seventh most-visited, according to the latest UK library survey issued by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA). The library has increased its visitor numbers and has moved up a place in the list of most visited libraries in the UK.

Leeds had 802,072 visitors in 2009-2010. Norfolk and Norwich Millennium Library, which had 1,497,760 visitors, topped the poll.

The CIPFA survey also shows that volunteering – central to the coalition Government’s vision for the ‘Big Society’ – has risen in public libraries in the past year. The total number of volunteers in UK libraries rose by 7.7 per cent to 17,111 people. Over the same period, the number of library staff dropped by 3.4 per cent to 24,765.

Chris Greene, CIPFA’s Head of Research and Statistics said:

“Leeds’ fantastic achievement shows that modern libraries are as relevant to their communities as ever. In the light of the Big Society agenda, it is also interesting to note the significant rise in the level of volunteering in UK libraries.”

Ends

Contact: Guy Roberts/ Lindsay Machin / Chloe Forbes
CIPFA Press Office
t 020 7543 5712/5645/5787
e guy.roberts@cipfa.org.uk / lindsay.machin@cipfa.org.uk / chloe.forbes@cipfa.org.uk

Notes to Editors:

1. Headline figures from the latest CIPFA library statistics are available from www.cipfastats.net, with the full dataset available to subscribers.

2. Popularity is defined in relation to the number of visits to the library and the number of stock issues.

3. The busiest libraries in the UK are:

Top 20 by number of visits per annum

1

Norfolk

Norfolk & Norwich Millennium

1,497,760

2

Birmingham

Central Library

1,452,150

3

Croydon

Croydon Central

1,036,872

4

Newcastle upon Tyne

City Library

1,017,130

5

Manchester

Manchester Central

1,008,084

6

Brighton & Hove

Jubilee

984,491

7

Leeds

Central Library

802,072

8

Dundee

Central Library, The Wellgate

798,363

9

Barnet

Hendon

796,172

10

Sheffield

Central Library

792,813

11

Hounslow

Hounslow

772,499

12

Haringey

Wood Green Central

742,087

13

Milton Keynes

Milton Keynes Central

712,533

14

Tower Hamlets

Idea Store Whitechapel

704,571

15

Bromley

Central Library

677,805

16

Derbyshire

Chesterfield

662,093

17

Sutton

Sutton

661,297

18

Essex

Chelmsford

656,032

19

Sunderland

City Library & Arts Centre

649,298

20

Lancashire

Harris Library Preston

624,525



Top 20 by number of issues per annum

1

Norfolk

Norfolk & Norwich Millennium

1154563

2

Essex

Chelmsford

732401

3

Milton Keynes

Milton Keynes Central

678248

4

Oxfordshire

Central Library

676417

5

Derbyshire

Chesterfield

632567

6

Swansea

Swansea Central

590552

7

West Sussex

Crawley

585090

8

Southend-on-Sea

Southend

575308

9

Cardiff

Central Library

575143

10

Brighton & Hove

Jubilee

544126

11

Birmingham

Central Library

536227

12

Knowsley

Huyton Library

535500

13

Westminster

Charing Cross

509317

14

Sheffield

Central Library

505075

15

Devon

Exeter Central

504698

16

Newcastle upon Tyne

City Library

496932

17

Sutton

Sutton

495418

18

City of London

Barbican

463859

19

Bromley

Central Library

458214

20

Cumbria

Carlisle

441790

These figures are based on returns to the CIPFA Public Library Actuals survey 2009-10.

* The CIPFA survey asks for the library with the most visits and also the library with the most issues in a year, therefore only one library can qualify per authority. There is a small possibility that one authority could have a second library that would appear in the top 20 libraries.  E.g. Chelmsford in Essex is the most visited library is Essex, however Chelmsford has higher issues, so if Colchester has >450,000 issues per annum it will still not be included in the above top 20.

About CIPFA

CIPFA, the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy, is the professional body for people in public finance. Our 14,000 members work throughout the public services, in national audit agencies, in major accountancy firms, and in other bodies where public money needs to be effectively and efficiently managed. As the world’s only professional accountancy body to specialise in public services, CIPFA’s portfolio of qualifications are the foundation for a career in public finance. They include the benchmark professional qualification for public sector accountants as well as a postgraduate diploma for people already working in leadership positions. They are taught by our in-house CIPFA Education and Training Centre as well as other places of learning around the world. We also champion high performance in public services, translating our experience and insight into clear advice and practical services. They include information and guidance, courses and conferences, property and asset management solutions, consultancy and interim people for a range of public sector clients. Globally, CIPFA shows the way in public finance by standing up for sound public financial management and good governance. We work with donors, partner governments, accountancy bodies and the public sector around the world to advance public finance and support better public services.