Urgent meeting with the architect dealing with the new site for Roadkill Library. By pure happenchance T.Aldous blundered into a site meeting last Thursday and was told that the job's nearing completion and when are we moving the books in? This was news to T.Aldous, and the rest of us. Especially when he heard what the architect imagined "nearing completion" to be.
By now I have enough experience of these matters to know that T.Aldous' usual communications problems notwithstanding the blame will lie entirely with the architects. The meeting is the usual miscellaney of surprises.
The plan bears no relation to any of the plans for this library we've seen at any time over the past two and a half years. "What's that?" asks T.Aldous. "That's the worktop for the computers," answers the architect.
"What worktop?" Turns out he's decided that the only full working wall — where we'd quite like to have shelves for books, etc. — would be taken up by a worktop "like the one at Sheep City." That particular worktop is a long, ply-and-formica fixed work bench that has the ugly utilitarian look of the benches we had in the chemistry labs at school back in the sixties. As well as being ugly and inflexible it also cost a four-figure sum (how???) We gracefully decline the suggestion, me suggesting off-the-shelf desks for the PCs and T.Aldous suggesting a library design company for the library design. We further disgrace ourselves by insisting that the electricity points are distributed more usefully in the room rather than all being clustered around where the architect has decided that the counter's going to be (and won't be if Himself has any say in the matter).
"It's a bit late to be making changes like this," says the architect.
"The library has to be functional or we can't move in," replies T.Aldous.
Afterwards T.Aldous has a completely justified rant about the stupidity of the situation and our always having to work in the dark up to the point of the last minute panic. Sadly, he cannot take the next step and recognise that this way of working isn't good within the library service either. Ah well...