11th October 2021
Opinion pieces are the view of the author and in no way reflects the views of the Liverpool Guild Student Media or Liverpool Guild of Students.
To help prevent the spread of the ongoing Coronavirus, the University have closed the Sydney Jones Library. This comes after a 1 day warning from the Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Education. In an email to students, Professor Gavin Brown stated that “the safety of our staff and students must remain our primary concern.”
The Sydney Jones is home to students of arts, humanities, law, and social and environmental studies. It had previously been bookable for study spaces, however, as of the 14th January, these have been made unavailable. The library will still be open for the Click and Collect book service however.
Students have instead been advised to relocate to the Harold Cohen library, open 8am-11pm 7 days a week, the School of Law and Social Justice Building, or to Brodie Tower. Not all students have taken the decision lightly however, taking to Facebook to share their concerns.
One user wrote:
“Now you can only book the library for a maximum of 20 hours a week. They say that if you can work in your room you should do. Why should the uni dictate where I want to study? I’m paying for the library so I want to use it for however long I like, not be told 20 hours max a week only.”
Another pointed out the logistics of the new arrangements:
“Uni logic closing Sydney Jones so more people are cramped into Harold Cohen and spaces are booked for basically the next month. Sort it out.”
However, there is also a feeling of understanding from other students, writing:
“There’s a pandemic happening right now so people have to make sacrifices. People are literally dying.”
As all of this comes just days before the start of the assessment period, tensions are high. Particular concerns are over the booking rules whereby study spaces can only be allocated two days in advance. A petition has thus been opened on Change.org. This advocates for the reopening of the library, and has received over 750 signatures (at time of writing).
Featured Image Credit: University of Liverpool