- DESERT ISLAND DISCS
- LADY ANTONIA FRASER'S LIFE LESS ORDINARY
- RESPONSE TO LETTER SENT TO THE BRITISH LIBRARY
- SPEECH GIVEN AT THE OPENING OF ‘ON THE NATURE OF WOMEN'
- LETTER SENT TO THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE OF THE BRITISH LIBRARY
- SPEECH GIVEN AT THE ‘CELEBRATION FOR DRAGON WOMEN’ LUNCH (2)
- SPEECH GIVEN AT ‘CELEBRATION FOR DRAGON WOMEN’ LUNCH (1)
- THE OTHER BOLEYN GIRL (Part 2)
- THE OTHER BOLEYN GIRL (Part 1)
- ANTONIA FRASER'S DIARY
- Truth and Reality in Operatic Librettos (part three)
- Truth and Reality in Operatic Librettos (part two)
- Truth and Reality in Operatic Librettos (part one)
- Society Portraits
- THE FRENCH CHILD
- CULTURAL LIFE
- QUEEN ELIZABETH: A PERSONAL VIEW
- ANTONIA FRASER’S DIARY
- IF I CAME BACK AS…
- SPECTATOR DIARY
- LOVE, LOUIS XIV AND ME Part 2
- LOVE, LOUIS XIV AND ME
- MY HERO
- BODIAM CASTLE
LETTER SENT TO THE CHIEF EXECUTIVE OF THE BRITISH LIBRARY
BY EMAIL AND COURIER
Dame Lynne Brindley
The British Library , 96 Euston Road NW1 2DB
Dear Dame Lynne
Since I have been widely reported in the press on the subject of the British Library, I have decided to write to you directly in order to put my true views on the subject as accurately as possible.
First, I am a devoted adherent of the British Library where I have worked continuously, in the old and new versions, since 1953 when I left university.
Secondly, I have no objection in principle to the admission of students (or any other category of user). What I do feel is that the British Library, in changing its admissions policy, did not sufficiently address the problems this would bring. This is on the evidence of my own visits, supplemented by reports from a wide circle of fellow readers of all ages.
I can imagine some short term solutions - more locker rooms, a further cloakroom official at busy times. A notice downstairs in the cloakroom when Reading Rooms are full, for example, would save the irritating experience of queueing to deposit bag and coat, then queueing again to retrieve them because there was no room upstairs. None of this can alleviate the central problem: more readers either mean more seats or chaos and frustration.
I feel particularly sorry for readers from outside London who make an expensive day trip to research and then can't get a seat. I am fortunate enough to live in Central London so it does not apply to me: but I know of numbers of people - once again of all ages - to whom this has happened.
I would like to end by paying a tribute to the patience and kindness of your staff in what must be most trying circumstances. They deserve better. We all do.
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