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Code of Conduct & Procedures for Library Users

The William Salt Library holds an outstanding collection of books, manuscripts and graphic materials for the County of Staffordshire.  Your co-operation with the Library staff in observing our Code of Conduct and procedures will help to preserve the Library’s collections for present and future generations. 

1. All intending readers must complete the registration process on their first visit to obtain a reader’s ticket.  A registration card should be completed and an official form of identification, which includes name, current address and signature must be produced to support registration. (Please see our list of acceptable proofs of identity and address).  Without a reader’s ticket, it is not possible to consult any of the Library’s collections. There can be no exceptions to this. By signing the registration card a reader also agrees to accept this Code of Conduct.

2. A readers’ ticket will be issued on completion of registration. This must be handed to staff on each visit to the Library. Readers should collect their reader’s ticket from the staff when they leave the building.

3. All readers must sign the visitors’ book upon arrival at the Library and on each visit. 

4. A Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Archive Service reader’s ticket, issued through the archive Service, may be used at the Library. 

General Conduct
1. We do not allow smoking inside the Library building.

2. Bags, including handbags, and folders must be left in the lockers provided. Coats must be left in the main hall. Readers are responsible for the security of their own locker keys while in the Library. Where bags are too big to place in lockers, they must be left in the entrance hall at the reader’s own risk.      

3. Food, including sweets, and drinks are not allowed in the reading rooms.

4. Young children should be accompanied by an adult, who is responsible for their supervision.

5. We regret that we cannot admit animals, except service dogs and service dogs in training, to the reading rooms.

6. You are requested to give consideration to other readers, by keeping conversation to an absolute minimum. If you wish to have a lengthy conversation, please leave the reading rooms.

7. The use of mobile phones and tape recorders is not permitted in any of the reading rooms. The use of lap top computers is restricted and must be arranged in advance of a visit.

8. We consider inappropriate behaviour in the Library to include: behaving in a disorderly manner; using violent, abusive or obscene language; intentionally or recklessly doing anything likely to cause injury to any other person or property; intentionally disturbing, interrupting or annoying any other person properly using the reading rooms; and viewing inappropriate material on the internet or on personal lap top computers.

Availability of Library Items
1. Access to the collections held within the William Salt Library is entirely at the discretion of the Trustees of the Library. Access to some collections may be restricted by agreement with the depositor or donor. Collections in the process of being catalogued or conserved will not normally be made available.   

2. Readers requiring access to any personal data held within the Library collections will be required to sign a declaration that they will comply with the Data Protection Act, 1998.

Care of Library Items
1. Readers are responsible for the safety of all library items issued to them until they are returned and checked back by a member of staff. Original documents, graphic materials, printed books and pamphlets and any other Library items must not be left unattended. 

2. Manuscripts and other restricted access items must be handled carefully at all times.

3. Only pencils may be used in the reading rooms, except when completing registration cards and copying order forms. Library items must not be marked, annotated or defaced in any way.

4. Readers must not lean on newspapers, books or other library items or rest notepads on them while making notes. Please do not run fingers down pages, follow text with a finger or a pencil or use moisture to turn pages.

5. Volumes should be placed on a book rest, foam support or cushion as advised by staff and should not be kept open for longer than necessary. Please take particular care with original newspaper volumes which can unbalance book rests. 

6. Maps should be protected by a sheet of archival polyester or perspex, which we will provide.  Rolled maps should only be held open by archival weights. Once protected, maps may be traced, using a 2B pencil, with the permission of the staff on duty.

7. Gloves should be worn when handling parchment documents, glass negatives or photographs.  Readers may also be asked to wear gloves when using other types of material. The staff will supply gloves for your use.

8. Items from large bundles will be issued in small batches. Small bundles of documents must be kept in the order in which they were issued. 

9. Some newspapers are available in microfilm only. Where this is the case, the microfilm copy must be used in place of the original.

10. Library materials may be withheld from public use on preservation grounds. Readers should also note that it is not always possible to produce every item requested owing to the limitations of the Library building and the health and safety of the staff.

11. Readers are requested to inform the staff of any item which appears to be misplaced or which they find in a fragile or damaged condition.

12. The copying of any Library item is subject to the terms of the Library’s Preservation Policy, current copyright law and any special conditions imposed by the donor of the item.

1. Permission to reproduce, exhibit or publish copies or transcripts of  Library items, whether in hard copy or electronic form, should be requested in writing.  The use of any Library materials must be acknowledged in any published hard copy or electronic work. Fees for the use of Library items in publication will be charged according to the Library’s current scale of charges.

1. The William Salt Librarian has discretion to exclude from the Library  any member of the public who contravenes this code of conduct or who, in the opinion of the Librarian,  behaves inappropriately.

Procedures For Users of the Library

Admission to the reading Room
1. The Library does not operate an appointment system but space is limited. Where possible, readers will be accommodated but it may not be practicable to provide space for groups, even family groups, without prior notice. It may not always be possible to produce very large items for consultation without notice. It may also be necessary at busy times to ask intending readers to return at a later time or date. We are unable to accommodate visitors not undertaking research.  Please also tell us if you have any special needs such as wheelchair access.

2. To avoid disappointment, we advise readers to check whether the Library holds the material which you require in advance of a visit.

3. We can accommodate working group of up to four people by prior arrangement. We can also arrange brief familiarisation visits for educational groups with prior notice. 

Issue and Return of Library Items
1. Library items on the open shelves are available for consultation between advertised opening hours. These items include general subject, topographical and bibliographical works and a number of standard reference books. 

2. Restricted access items are produced between the following times: Tuesday – Thursday  10.00am - 12.45pm and 2-00pm - 3.30pm.  

3. A maximum of three restricted access references may be ordered using the Library’s request slips at one time.

4. Readers should be aware that delays in the production of items may occur at busy times or at times of staff shortages.

5. Readers are required to sign for any restricted item at the point of issue. These items should be returned to a member of staff and readers should wait to have their documents checked. All items must be checked back before readers leave the Library.

6. There is no advance ordering of documents prior to any visit as they are produced to order on the day of any visit.

Microfilm / Microfiche Viewers and Computers
1. A microfilm / microfiche viewer can be booked in advance.  If you wish to use newspapers it is essential to check with us in advance whether the one which you require is on microfilm. 

2. Care should be taken to avoid scratching microfilm and microfiche.

3. Computers are provided to enable access to the Library’s catalogue and are not for personal use, such as the checking of email accounts. They must not be used for watching TV programmes on the Internet. 

1. Photocopies may be supplied at the discretion of the Library staff, where this does not contravene the Library’s preservation policy or any copyright restrictions.  Photocopying of up to five copies will only be carried out on the spot when the Library is not busy and at the discretion of the staff. 

2. Print-outs from microfilms can be ordered but cannot be supplied on the spot. 

3. We do not accept orders for any copies by telephone. Orders for copies must be made using the Library order forms available at the Library or on the Library’s web site. The copyright declarations must be completed before copies can be supplied. 

4. Photographs of Library items may be taken using a hand-held camera, without flash, provided that there are no copyright restrictions and provided that a photographic permit has been purchased. However readers must consult a member of staff before taking any photographs. Readers wishing to use tripods and other large photographic equipment must arrange this with the Library staff in advance.

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