Book to the future: late return to Scunthorpe Library after five decades

Schools, Libraries and Learning
16:10, Thursday, 3rd August 2023

A book has been returned to Scunthorpe Central Library – some 54 years since it was borrowed.

The book, a first edition copy of ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’, was last checked out in 1969 and could have incurred fines of £120, 18 shillings and tuppence – equivalent to £4,500 in today’s money.

North Lincolnshire Council recently took the decision to permanently abolish library fines, encouraging residents to use the services at their local library without fear of penalties.

Partnerships and Community Librarian Tim Davies pictured with the book

Partnerships and Community Librarian Tim Davies pictured with the book

The science fiction classic will now be returned to the shelves for others to enjoy.

Cllr John Davison, cabinet member for safer, stronger communities – urban, said:

“So much has changed in the 50 years since this book was last taken out, but local people can still visit our 14 local libraries, browse a brilliant selection of titles, and receive recommendations from our knowledgeable teams.

“In other ways, our libraries have continued to evolve. Many are now part of community hubs, enabling residents to access key services more conveniently, under one roof.

“Our library members also have access to thousands more books than ever before, with some 4,600 e-books and e-audio titles at their fingertips through Borrowbox and 7,000 more magazines through PressReader.

“With lots of fantastic, family-friendly events taking place through North Lincolnshire’s Year of Reading, there has never been a better time to rediscover your local library.”

A photo showing the date stamps the book was due to be returned. The last date is 11 October 1969

The book was due to be returned on 11 October 1969

Earlier this month more than 600 people visited Scunthorpe Central Library for the launch of this year’s Summer Reading Challenge, enjoying a variety of sport and play themed activities.

Other activities coming soon include a Manga Meet Up, Star Wars crafting and the popular Breakfast and Books sessions. See all library events on our website.

People can also access the library catalogue, renew their loans and more by downloading the North Lincolnshire Libraries app.

Find out more about North Lincolnshire Libraries on our website, follow their Facebook page.