13,000 books at Southend libraries are overdue

Echo: Forum: The new library in Southend is one of the town's libraries missing books Forum: The new library in Southend is one of the town's libraries missing books

MORE than 13,000 books are overdue at Southend’s libraries...and bosses refuse to rule out using bailiffs to recover costs.

Figures show 13,788 books are currently overdue for their return to Southend’s libraries, and they rack up a maximum in £6 in fines each.

A spokesman said: “We have a robust and cost-effective process for chasing overdue items, which may include the use of bailiffs if circumstances suggest this would be proportionate. This process usually takes six to seven months after the items become overdue.”

She added that the overdue books were written off after three years, but anyone who still hasn’t given their book back is banned from borrowing any new ones.

But the council’s libraries manager said that they have never taken the drastic step of using bailiffs.

Simon May said: “Southend Council’s library service has never instructed bailiffs to physically recover library fines, even though it’s had the option to do so for the past 15 years.

“It prefers a softer method of recovering fines, primarily sending a letter reminding borrowers items are overdue. It would never use bailiffs to recover library fines on children’s books.”

Southend libraries lend around 750,000 items a year.

Comments (9)

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8:45pm Tue 21 Jan 14

DogsMessInLeigh says...

Wow...., ok there are possibly some that have been lost or soiled and some where the borrower may have passed on but thats a small amount still leaves 13000..!! thats a lot of value and fines if they ever got paid of course, treat the library with more respect and take your 13000 books back you orrible lot you know who you are....and so does the Library.
Wow...., ok there are possibly some that have been lost or soiled and some where the borrower may have passed on but thats a small amount still leaves 13000..!! thats a lot of value and fines if they ever got paid of course, treat the library with more respect and take your 13000 books back you orrible lot you know who you are....and so does the Library. DogsMessInLeigh

8:57pm Tue 21 Jan 14

Benefit-Scrounger says...

DogsMessInLeigh wrote:
Wow...., ok there are possibly some that have been lost or soiled and some where the borrower may have passed on but thats a small amount still leaves 13000..!! thats a lot of value and fines if they ever got paid of course, treat the library with more respect and take your 13000 books back you orrible lot you know who you are....and so does the Library.
Thieving bastard5 like me!
[quote][p][bold]DogsMessInLeigh[/bold] wrote: Wow...., ok there are possibly some that have been lost or soiled and some where the borrower may have passed on but thats a small amount still leaves 13000..!! thats a lot of value and fines if they ever got paid of course, treat the library with more respect and take your 13000 books back you orrible lot you know who you are....and so does the Library.[/p][/quote]Thieving bastard5 like me! Benefit-Scrounger

11:22pm Tue 21 Jan 14

Nebs says...

Given the cost of the library to the council, they could have simply given everyone in the borough a £70 book token or a kindle and had no ongoing running costs.
Given the cost of the library to the council, they could have simply given everyone in the borough a £70 book token or a kindle and had no ongoing running costs. Nebs

5:17am Wed 22 Jan 14

parneets says...

its seems to be very nice
its seems to be very nice parneets

7:40am Wed 22 Jan 14

DogsMessInLeigh says...

parneets wrote:
its seems to be very nice
yes even if the book shelfs are half empty.
[quote][p][bold]parneets[/bold] wrote: its seems to be very nice[/p][/quote]yes even if the book shelfs are half empty. DogsMessInLeigh

8:55am Wed 22 Jan 14

supermadmax says...

Refuse to acknowledge the bailiffs, NEVER let them in your property, ignore all generic letters left, they have to give up after 3 attempts unless you communicate with them.
Refuse to acknowledge the bailiffs, NEVER let them in your property, ignore all generic letters left, they have to give up after 3 attempts unless you communicate with them. supermadmax

9:27am Wed 22 Jan 14

DogsMessInLeigh says...

supermadmax wrote:
Refuse to acknowledge the bailiffs, NEVER let them in your property, ignore all generic letters left, they have to give up after 3 attempts unless you communicate with them.
so you don't mind it costing you money then...why should 13000 of 'our' books get written off, for those that failed to return books a deposit may need to be put in place next time or just ban them like they said.
13000 is way too many, books ain't cheap.
[quote][p][bold]supermadmax[/bold] wrote: Refuse to acknowledge the bailiffs, NEVER let them in your property, ignore all generic letters left, they have to give up after 3 attempts unless you communicate with them.[/p][/quote]so you don't mind it costing you money then...why should 13000 of 'our' books get written off, for those that failed to return books a deposit may need to be put in place next time or just ban them like they said. 13000 is way too many, books ain't cheap. DogsMessInLeigh

9:55am Wed 22 Jan 14

supermadmax says...

DogsMessInLeigh wrote:
supermadmax wrote:
Refuse to acknowledge the bailiffs, NEVER let them in your property, ignore all generic letters left, they have to give up after 3 attempts unless you communicate with them.
so you don't mind it costing you money then...why should 13000 of 'our' books get written off, for those that failed to return books a deposit may need to be put in place next time or just ban them like they said.
13000 is way too many, books ain't cheap.
No I think they should give the books back but I also think people should know their rights concerning bailiffs(which many dont). If you forgot to return a book or lost one, would you think it fair that 6 months later bully boy bayliffs turned up on your door to take your property to sell for a fraction of price @ auction, unless you had the cash (there and then) to pay the book fine + exorbitant court costs & bailiff fees?
[quote][p][bold]DogsMessInLeigh[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]supermadmax[/bold] wrote: Refuse to acknowledge the bailiffs, NEVER let them in your property, ignore all generic letters left, they have to give up after 3 attempts unless you communicate with them.[/p][/quote]so you don't mind it costing you money then...why should 13000 of 'our' books get written off, for those that failed to return books a deposit may need to be put in place next time or just ban them like they said. 13000 is way too many, books ain't cheap.[/p][/quote]No I think they should give the books back but I also think people should know their rights concerning bailiffs(which many dont). If you forgot to return a book or lost one, would you think it fair that 6 months later bully boy bayliffs turned up on your door to take your property to sell for a fraction of price @ auction, unless you had the cash (there and then) to pay the book fine + exorbitant court costs & bailiff fees? supermadmax

10:48am Wed 22 Jan 14

maddriver says...

supermadmax wrote:
DogsMessInLeigh wrote:
supermadmax wrote:
Refuse to acknowledge the bailiffs, NEVER let them in your property, ignore all generic letters left, they have to give up after 3 attempts unless you communicate with them.
so you don't mind it costing you money then...why should 13000 of 'our' books get written off, for those that failed to return books a deposit may need to be put in place next time or just ban them like they said.
13000 is way too many, books ain't cheap.
No I think they should give the books back but I also think people should know their rights concerning bailiffs(which many dont). If you forgot to return a book or lost one, would you think it fair that 6 months later bully boy bayliffs turned up on your door to take your property to sell for a fraction of price @ auction, unless you had the cash (there and then) to pay the book fine + exorbitant court costs & bailiff fees?
There seems to be confusion here. Anyone sent to your door to collect these overdue charges(they are not fines)will be a debt collector and not a bailiff.
For a bailiff to be sent a court order is necessary and debt collectors have no powers to seize goods or make additional charges unless a court order is granted. To obtain orders for this many books would take a huge number of court cases so it will never happen.
Perhaps those dishonest people who haven't returned these books could do the decent thing and return them promptly to save taxpayers a lot of time and money.
[quote][p][bold]supermadmax[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]DogsMessInLeigh[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]supermadmax[/bold] wrote: Refuse to acknowledge the bailiffs, NEVER let them in your property, ignore all generic letters left, they have to give up after 3 attempts unless you communicate with them.[/p][/quote]so you don't mind it costing you money then...why should 13000 of 'our' books get written off, for those that failed to return books a deposit may need to be put in place next time or just ban them like they said. 13000 is way too many, books ain't cheap.[/p][/quote]No I think they should give the books back but I also think people should know their rights concerning bailiffs(which many dont). If you forgot to return a book or lost one, would you think it fair that 6 months later bully boy bayliffs turned up on your door to take your property to sell for a fraction of price @ auction, unless you had the cash (there and then) to pay the book fine + exorbitant court costs & bailiff fees?[/p][/quote]There seems to be confusion here. Anyone sent to your door to collect these overdue charges(they are not fines)will be a debt collector and not a bailiff. For a bailiff to be sent a court order is necessary and debt collectors have no powers to seize goods or make additional charges unless a court order is granted. To obtain orders for this many books would take a huge number of court cases so it will never happen. Perhaps those dishonest people who haven't returned these books could do the decent thing and return them promptly to save taxpayers a lot of time and money. maddriver

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