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Library Statistics

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King's Library

Website usage

Use of 2009/10 2008/09
Unique hosts served1, 2 6,208,184 6,211,722
Successful requests for pages (page hits)2, 3 74,635,211 77,273,030

1 Unique hosts served is the best approximation available to the number of individual users of the website.
2 The slight decrease in 2009/10 is mainly due to extensive changes to the Library's website which had a temporary impact on the visibility of individual pages via search engines.
3 The number of pages of all types viewed on the website. Every landing on every page is counted in this figure.

Service in the Reading Rooms

Seats available for users at 31 March 2010 Reader desks Other provision1
Humanities Floor 1 and 2 Reading Rooms 442 83
Rare Books & Music Reading Room 293 76
Maps Reading Room 49 22
Asian & African Studies Reading Room (formerly known as Oriental and India Office Reading Room) 81 51
Manuscripts Reading Room 72 28
Philatelic Collections 1 0
Science Reading Rooms 129 53
Business & IP Centre 100 77
Social Sciences Reading Room 59 23
Newspapers (Colindale) 77 77
Boston Spa Reading Room 84 14
Total 1,387 504

1 This includes seats provided at the British Library Integrated Catalogue screens, electronic database terminals, microform readers and carrels (the individual study booths in the Reading Rooms).

Bibliographic services

Records in British Library catalogues and databases at 31 March 2010 2009/10 2008/09
British Library Integrated Catalogue1,2 12,964,141 12,506,391
Access to archives2,3 593,338 593,338
Asia, Pacific and Africa Collections – Japanese and Chinese2,4 67,931 63,621
Allied and Complementary Medicine (AMED) 241,245 230,091
British National Bibliography (BNB) 2,954,885 2,794,006
Sound Archive Catalogue2 3,190,131 3,134,287
English Short Title Catalogue (ESTC)2 478,152 477,300
Incunable Short Title Catalogue (ISTC)2 30,123 29,993
Electronic table of contents2,5 37,743,439 35,253,510
International Standard Serial Numbers (ISSN) UK Centre 127,145 125,909
Manuscripts2 825,382 818,037
Newspapers2 57,352 55,761
Register of Preservation Surrogates 219,655 217,967
Total6 59,492,919 56,300,211

1 Number of unique records. A project to remove any duplication is ongoing.
2 Available from the Library's website.
3 Conversion of printed catalogues to electronic versions for inclusion on the Access to Archives website hosted by The National Archives, was completed in 2006/07 and therefore this figure has remained the same in 2009/10 and 2008/09.
4 All other Asia, Pacific and Africa Collection material, except for Japanese and Chinese material, is included in the British Library Integrated Catalogue.
5 A database listing articles and conference papers by title, derived from the top 20,000 research journals. The database is available through British Library Direct and to Higher Education through
6 The total does not represent the number of unique records. There is significant overlap between some files e.g. British National Bibliography and British Library Integrated Catalogue.

Collection development

Collection Holdings at 31 March 2010 2009/10 2008/09
Monographs1 13,950,002 13,735,633
Serial titles (all)2 824,101 826,112
Manuscripts (single and volumes) 351,116 347,263
India Office records3 452,209 452,175
Philatelic items 8,266,276 8,265,391
Cartographic items 4,347,505 4,343,842
Music scores 1,607,885 1,604,779
Sound discs 1,473,087 1,452,997
Sound tape items 245,367 244,494
Digital Audio Files4 30,361 14,843
Videos 35,406 32,029
Prints and drawings 33,082 33,060
Photographs 297,932 294,220
Patent specifications 62,106,691 58,892,064
Reports in microform5 10,330,059 10,330,059
Theses6 196,529 171,627
Total 104,547,608 101,040,588

1 The figure for monographs is based on the number of records in the relevant catalogues. This figure includes an estimate of items covered by card catalogues.
2 The figure for serials titles is based on the number of records in the relevant catalogues. Changes of title are therefore counted as separate titles. This figure includes an estimate of items covered by card catalogues. A significant project has been undertaken to de-duplicate serial holdings.  This rationalised database more accurately reflects the number of unique titles held.
3 The archives of the India Office (1858-1947) and its predecessors, including the East India Company (1600-1858).
4 Digital audio files are now used extensively and have largely taken over from sound tape items.
5 Reports in microform are no longer produced as the microfilm service for UK Theses has been replaced by the Electronic Theses Online System (EThOS). This stores and supplies digital download copies of theses that have been scanned in the digitisation suite at Boston Spa.
6 Theses are now created, stored and supplied electronically on EThOS.

Items received on legal deposit

  2009/10 2008/09
Monographs1 129,245 141,755
Serial issues2 237,737 259,763
Maps and atlases 2,020 1,932
Music scores 1,765 2,041
Newspaper issues3 135,688 144,982
Playscripts 257 275
Total 506,712 550,748
Serial titles received 35,599 35, 977
Claims for items not automatically deposited 225,900 252,168

1 Work undertaken in 2008/09 resulted in a significant increase in Monographs received during the year. Some of this increase resulted from Monographs actually published in prior years that had not been deposited. The 2009/10 figure reflects more accurately the underlying annual rate of deposit.
2 The number of items received on Legal Deposit in 2009/10 is lower than in the previous year as a result of work undertaken to remove duplication in the count of bibliographic holdings.
3 The decrease in 2009/10 is due to a reduction in the number of printed newspaper titles available for deposit.


Kilometres of shelving and percentage occupied 2009/10 2008/09
Working capacity: linear km1, 2 902 655
Extent of collection: linear km3 658.4 648.4
Percentage occupied4 73% 99%


Preservation funding 2009/10 2008/09
  £000 £000
Grant in Aid 6,009 6,198
Donations/external funds 126 165
Sales income 262 278
Total 6,397 6,641
Items preserved5 2009/10 2008/09
Conservation and/or rebinding 2,870 4,358
New binding 32,680 36,523
Minor repairs 3,036 3,403
Boxing/other work 12,846 9,126
Preservation microfilming6 12,614 15,691
Total 64,046 69,101
Preservation microfilming7 2009/10 2008/09
Newspapers: frames of film 13,174,939 16,025,582
Books, periodicals, record volumes, manuscripts: frames of film 858,757 1,429,756
Total8 14,033,696 17,455,338

1 Working capacity represents the linear length of the solid stock, plus the associated growth spaces without which the collection could not be used and added to effectively.
2 The 247 linear km increase in working capacity is explained by the inclusion this year of the Library's new high density storage building. Moves into this building are in progress with those from the three leasehold buildings and is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2010. At that point the leasehold buildings with a total working capacity of 110 linear kms will be surrendered with a consequent reduction in working capacity to 792 linear kms.
3 This is an overall estimate using actual figures that are available, together with estimates for growth for some collections not yet available for 2009/10. The latter is largely explained by the ingest of empty containers and the large scale stock moves into the high density storage building. During this time it has not been possible to add newly processed items, and their associated growth where appropriate, to this location. The information will be captured once routine working of the high density storage building commences.
4 Once allowance is made for the reduction of 110 linear kms following the surrender of the leasehold buildings percentage occupied rises to 83%.
5 Fluctuations in figures are due to the normal variations which occur annually when treating a wide range of non-standard items with variable resources and priorities.
6 This figure is the approximate number of volumes equivalent to the frames shown under the heading 'preservation microfilming'.
7 One frame equates to one camera exposure. These generally represent either a single or double page of a monograph, newspaper or periodical.  For most programmes, a negative, positive and duplicate are taken of each page. Consequently the number of frames shown does not represent the number of pages for which surrogate copies have been made.
8 The decrease from the previous year is due to a reduction in expenditure on surrogacy programmes for 2009/10 together with an increase in costs.

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