Yet another last-minute dash: this time to fit electronic people counters in all our libraries by 1st April. The equipment was fitted in most libraries at Xmas, I'm now running round to install the software that downloads the data and converts it into useful spreadsheets. The kit works on an electric beam: it counts the number of interruptions then divides the result by four (a two-legged person going in and coming out). T.Aldous told everyone who would listen, and many who had no such intention, that someone walking past with a ladder would count as a dozen people. The Chief Executive told Warner Baxter that he needs to schedule regular inspections of the ceiling and lights in all our libraries.
I've just downloaded the data for Epiphany Library. Epiphany is halfway between Helminthdale town centre and the head of the u-shaped glacial valley that forms the eastern end of the Borough. The library building sits on the main road into town forming a sort of protecting barrier between the local shopping centre and a four-lane highway. The bleak winds off the Pennines are funnelled down the valley and pick up speed down the road before hitting Epiphany admidships. Being built by an Helminthdale Council architect, the leeward side of the library is made of solid brick and the windward side is glass and steel struts. In the merest breeze the building shivers like a cat stalking a bird. In any sort of a wind the whole place hums like a glass harmonica. This has obviously influenced the results of the people counter: according to the results the library was at its busiest just after midnight last Friday when 64,000 visitors came in during the howling gail and hailstorm they had that night.
"We'll have to find some way of stopping the people counter from wobbling about," I'm told. Me, I can't see any problem: that's one public library standard sorted.