Manchester City Council

Libraries Library Byelaws

Library Byelaws made under Section 19 of the Public Libraries and Museums Act 1964 by the Manchester City Council

1. In these byelaws, unless the context otherwise requires:

a. "the Act" means the Public Libraries and Museums Act 1964

b. "charge" means any charge imposed in accordance with the Regulations

c. "child" means a person under the age of 16 years

d. "emergency situation" includes situations where a library or part of a library is required to be evacuated for security reasons or because of threat from fire or other hazard and practices and false alarms in relation thereto

e. "last known address" means the last address held on the library authority's records

f. the library authority means the Manchester City Council

g. "library" means

i. any premises which are occupied by a library authority and are premises where library facilities are made available by the authority, in the course of their provision of a public library service, to members of the public

ii. any vehicle which is used by the library authority for the purpose of providing a public library service to members of the public and is a vehicle in which facilities are made available; and includes any part of such premises or vehicle

h. "the library officer" means any officer employed by the library authority in connection with its functions under the Act

i. "library property" includes property owned by or provided for the use of the library authority whether or not it is made available by the library authority for use by the public and property obtained by the library authority for the loan to or use of the public

j. "the Regulations" means The Library Charges (England and Wales) Regulations 1991 S.I.1991/2712

k. "replacement costs" means the cost of replacing an item by purchasing the same title and edition if available or a similar item if not

l. "appropriate charges" means administrative charges, overdue charges and other such charges determined from time to time by the City Council and set out in the list of charges in the library service issued by the City Council

m. words importing the masculine gender include the feminine, words in the singular include the plural and words in the plural include the singular

n. expressions used, unless the contrary intention appears, have the meaning which they bear in the Act and Regulations

2. An act performed in connection with the proper execution of his duty by a library officer shall not be a contravention of these byelaws.

3. No person shall give a false name or address for the purpose of entering the library or for the purpose of using any library facility.

4. No person who, in the reasonable opinion of a library officer, is offensively unclean in person or clothing or both shall remain in the library.

5. Except with the consent of a library officer, no person shall:

a. cause or allow any dog (other than a working dog accompanying a disabled person) or other animal belonging to him or under his control to enter or remain in the library

b. bring into any part of the library a wheeled vehicle or conveyance other than a wheelchair, pram, pushchair or shopping trolley

c. enter or remain in any part of the library which a reasonable person would or should know is prohibited to the public or

d. remain in the library after the time fixed for its closing

6. No person shall remain in the library after an emergency situation has been made known to him.

7. No person shall, unless specifically permitted by a library officer, take or attempt to take any library property from the library or past a check out or security point.

8. No person shall, without lawful excuse, destroy or damage any library property, intending to destroy or damage such property or being reckless as to whether such a property should be destroyed or damaged.

9. No person shall behave in a disorderly manner in the library, use violent, abusive or obscene language therein, or intentionally or recklessly cause or do anything likely to cause injury to any other person or property.

10. No person shall sleep in the library after having been requested not to do so by a library officer.

11. No person shall remain in a library without making proper use of the library's facilities after having been requested, by a library officer, to make such proper use of the facilities.

12. No person shall engage in audible conversation in any part of the library set apart as a reference department, study area, or where such conversation is prohibited by notice, or after having been requested not to so by a library officer.

13. No person shall intentionally or recklessly obstruct any library officer in the execution of his duty or intentionally or recklessly disturb, obstruct, interrupt, abuse or annoy any other person properly using the library.

14. No person shall, without the consent of a library officer, intentionally display, distribute, or leave any bill, placard, notice or other document in the library.

15. No person shall, without the consent of a library officer, offer anything for sale in the library or canvass or seek signatures for petitions.

16. No person having charge of a child shall without the consent of a library officer leave him unsupervised in the library.

17. No person shall smoke, light a match or use a cigarette lighter in the library other than in an area designated as an area where smoking is permitted.

18. No person in any part of the library shall inhale any toxic substance for the purpose of causing intoxication or take any controlled drug as defined by Schedule 2 of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 other than drugs dispensed for and pursuant to prescription issued for him by a doctor under and in accordance with the aforesaid Act.

19. No person shall, except with the consent of a library officer, partake of refreshment, including alcoholic beverages, in the library.

20. No person shall, except with the consent of a library officer, cause or allow any mobile telephone, portable computer, or other electrical equipment, or apparatus for the reception of sound broadcasting or for the reproduction of sound, to be operated in any part of the library to which the public has access.

21. No person who

a. borrows library property which is or if returned would be late

b. fails to pay any charge

shall, unless with the specific consent of a library officer, borrow any other library property.

22a. Any person who has borrowed library property which if returned would be returned late and who has been served with a notice by the library authority demanding return of the library property shall return the library property or pay the appropriate replacement cost and charges to a library provided by the library authority within 14 days from the date the notice was served.

22b. For the purpose of this byelaw, a notice may be served upon any person by delivering it to him, or by leaving it at his last known address, or by sending it by post addressed to him at that address.

23. Except as regards byelaws 8 and 18, any person who contravenes any of the aforegoing byelaws shall be liable to prosecution and shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 2 on the standard scale in respect of each offence.

24. A library officer may exclude any person who contravenes any of the foregoing byelaws from any library maintained by the library authority under the Act.

25. On the coming into operation of these byelaws, the byelaws relating to libraries which were made by the Manchester City Council on the 22nd day of March 1971 and were confirmed by the Minister of Education in April 1972 shall be revoked.

The Common Seal of the Council of the City of Manchester was hereunto affixed in pursuance of an Order of the Council of the said City

Authorised Signatory

The foregoing byelaws are hereby confirmed by the Head of Museums, Libraries and Archives Division on behalf of the Secretary of State of Culture, Media and Sport and shall into operation on the Fourth day of September 2001.

Janet Evans Head of Museums, Libraries and Archives Division Department of Culture, Media and Sport


Users of the library and library facilities are reminded that the provisions of the general law apply at all times. In particular as regards the activities referred to in byelaws 8 and 18 the library authority draws attention to the existence of the Criminal Damage Act 1971 and the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971.

People who intend to make copies of works are advised that they may only do so in accordance with the provisions of the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 and are liable to prosecution under that Act if they fail to observe its provisions.

City of Manchester Library Regulations

These Regulations were revised by Manchester City Council in May 2000, to come into immediate effect.

These Regulations should be viewed in conjunction with the Libraries Byelaws made under Section 19 of the Public Libraries and Museums Act 1964.


In these Regulations definitions are as set out in the Byelaws with the addition that:

"item" means any book, newspaper, journal, pamphlet, music score, manuscript, picture, print, photograph, engraving, map, audio recording, video, compact disc, computer disc or similar material that is regarded as the contents of a library or is lent to any person by or on behalf of Manchester City Council.


1. A library officer may exclude from a library, or deny or suspend borrowing rights, or access to the Internet to any person who contravenes any of the following regulations.

2. Every library shall be open to the general public during such hours and on such days as Manchester City Council shall from time to time determine. Opening hours will be displayed prominently in every library.

3. All bags and parcels may be taken into a library only on condition that all personal possessions are subject to security examination.

4. Bags, parcels and all other property left unattended in a library may be removed to a place designated for lost property. Lost property will be retained for a period of three months and then, if the owner cannot be contacted, disposed of.

5. Reasonable care is expected to be shown in the use of a library and library materials. Any person who damages library property must report it to the nearest library officer immediately. If a person damages, defaces or soils library property in any way by failing to take reasonable care, or being reckless as to whether such a property should be damaged or destroyed, they must pay for the full cost of replacing or making good the damaged property.

6. No person shall consume alcohol on any library premises or enter a library in a state of intoxication.

7. No person shall consume food or drink in a library other than in an area or at times set aside for such consumption.

8. Any person bringing a child into a library must ensure that they are cared for in accordance with the terms of the Children's Act, and that they do not misbehave and cause a nuisance to other library users.

9. An individual or organisation that wishes notices and posters to be displayed or distributed in a library must give them to a library officer to so do. Notices and posters will not normally be displayed that relate to profit-making or party political activities.

10. Any individual or organisation that wishes to use electrical equipment in a library may only do so with the permission of a library officer and according to any rules provided.

11. An individual or organisation that wishes to hold an exhibition or event in a library must apply in writing to a library officer. Permission will not normally be granted to individuals or organisations whose purpose is profit-making or party political.

12. Meetings Rooms will be made available to local non profit-making organisations free of charge, and for a small fee to other organisations. The individual who books the room is responsible for ensuring that reasonable care is taken by all members of the organisation in the use of the room. Rules governing the use of Meetings Rooms will be given to all individuals who make bookings and must be adhered to.

Reference Facilities

13. Items for reference use only must not be removed from the library.

14. Items for reference use only that are kept in the public areas of a library should be left on the tables after use.

15. For reference use of items that are kept in non public areas of a library it may be necessary for a person to sign an appropriate form and show adequate proof of name and address or their library ticket. Reference items consulted in this way must be returned to a library officer at the place where the item was issued.

16. Items which in the opinion of a library officer are rare or of a special character can be consulted only upon receipt of a written application and with the approval of a library officer. Adequate proof of name and address, over and above the production of a library ticket, shall also be required.

17. Where photocopying and photographic facilities are provided they must be used in accordance with the provisions of the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988.

Lending Facilities

18. The library has a statutory duty to provide library lending services to any person who resides or whose place of work or full time education is within the City of Manchester. Membership fees may be payable by anyone who does not fulfil one of these criteria. In addition any child under 16 years of age needs the signature of a guarantor. Detailed guidance on registration will be given at each Registration Desk.

19. When a person has joined the library a ticket is provided. Items can be borrowed according to the borrowers allowance which is automatically controlled by the library issuing system. This allowance will be explained at registration.

20. Children under 13 years of age will not be able to borrow adult books unless they have been authorised by a library officer.

21. A borrower should only have one Manchester City Council library ticket and is responsible for the safe-keeping of that ticket and for any items borrowed on it except in Regulation 30 below.

22. A borrowers ticket is available for use at any Manchester City Council library. Items may be returned or renewed at any Manchester City Council library.

23. A borrowers ticket is not transferable and no items shall be borrowed from any library without being issued.

24. Each item shall be returned by the borrower within the loan period which is stamped on the item. If an item is not required by another borrower the loan period may be extended by bringing the item into the library and requesting its renewal.

25. If an item is returned after the due back date then a fine or charge shall be payable, unless the borrower is exempt.

26. If an item is not returned after notification or is returned damaged the borrower shall pay the replacement cost and an administration charge.

27. Borrowers are liable to pay all fines and charges as may be prescribed by Manchester City Council and displayed in each library. Failure to do so will result in the withdrawal of lending facilities and may result in legal action.

28. Borrowers are responsible for items until they are returned to the library and cleared from the library issuing system.

29. Any borrower who no longer uses the library or whose personal details change must notify a library officer immediately.

30. A borrower who loses or has a ticket stolen must immediately notify a library officer. A borrower is responsible for items borrowed on the ticket before a library officer is informed.

31. A charge is made for a replacement ticket, such sum to be determined by the Library Officer.

32. A borrower will be notified when an item that has been reserved for them is available. A charge is payable.

33. Specific collections or sections of the library may be subject to further specific regulations.

Dated the twelfth day of July 2000

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