§ Mr. Arthur Jones
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will publish figures of the number of loans made by public libraries in England and Wales for the last three years, listing by categories the nature of the demands met by public lending libraries.
§ Miss Jennie Lee
The last published estimate of the number of loans by public libraries was made by the Library Association and related to the whole of the United Kingdom for 1961–62. The figure was 460 million. Since then figures have been collected of the total number of books on loan on 31st March each year. These indicate a considerable increase in the use of libraries and on this basis it is estimated that the total number of issues from public libraries in the United Kingdom was around 600 million in 1968–69. Of these about ninety per cent. were made by public libraries in England and Wales. It is not possible to break these rough figures down by categories.