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  Item Reference: KCLCAL-1975-1976-423

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Annual Report of the Delegacy li need not necessarily be immediately adjacent to the books particular readers wished to use The suggestion referred to in last year's report that certain areas adjacent to the Science library but occupied by an academic department should be transferred to the Library to extend that reading room unfortunately proved impracticable and it was therefore necessary to look elsewhere for room for expansion to relieve pressure on the Science libraries After long consideration by the Accommodation Committee and the Library Committee solution was found which seemed likely to meet the minimum requirements of the Library in the mid-term future the Old Lecture Theatre would be mezzanined and converted into reading room immedately below and with connecting staircase to the present Old Library This work would however take some three years to carry out and in the meantime the Library would be allowed to occupy the present staff dining room which would be vacated in the summer of 1975 this could serve as subject reading room to relieve pressure on the existing Science libraries by the removal of the Geography and Geology libraries For the immediate future some additional seats would be provided in the Science reading rooms and it was further hoped that by arrangement with the Faculty of Natural Science lecture or seminar room accom- modation near the Science library could be made available at least at peak hours for use as an overflow reading room particularly for the many students who now occupied Library places merely to read or write up their notes The imminence of the centenaries of three distinguished scientists connected with the College-Sir Charles Wheatstone and Sir Charles Lyell in 1975 and James Clerk Maxwell in 1979-and the introduction of new history of science courses raised problems of access to the Library's important collection of nineteenth-century scientific literature most of which was outhoused at the Library Depository at Egham for lack of space in the Strand It was agreed that an effort should be made to bring this material back to form research collection in this field and the Library Committee welcomed the agreement of the Accommodation Committee to its proposal that the room in the East Wing formerly occupied by the Burrows library and still furnished with locking glazed cases should be restored to the Library for this purpose Modifications to the air-conditioning equipment in the Library strong rooms made possible the proper housing there of the military archives and during the long vacation of the Library's rare books
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