House of Commons Library (Books Borrowed)

Oral Answers to Questions — House of Commons Commission – in the House of Commons at 9:30 am on 28th February 2013.

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Photo of Thomas Docherty Thomas Docherty Labour, Dunfermline and West Fife 9:30 am, 28th February 2013

What the three most frequently borrowed books are in the Library in the current Parliament.

Photo of John Thurso John Thurso Chair, Finance and Services Committee, Chair, Finance and Services Committee

The three books most frequently borrowed from the House of Commons Library between 7 May 2010 and 14 February 2013 were “How Parliament Works” by Robert Rogers and Rhodri Walters, borrowed 44 times, Erksine May’s “A Treatise upon the Law, Privileges, Proceedings and Usage of Parliament”, edited by the Clerk of the House, borrowed 33 times, and in third place “A Journey” by Tony Blair, borrowed 31 times.

Photo of Thomas Docherty Thomas Docherty Labour, Dunfermline and West Fife

There is no surprise that the most popular book borrowed is a well-written and informative read, but does he share my disappointment at the lack of progress on a new and updated edition? Perhaps the Commission could consider some ways of encouraging progress. I understand that the rack has fallen out of fashionable use, but perhaps a spell clerking the Administration Committee or even the Travel Office consumer panel might encourage progress?

Photo of John Thurso John Thurso Chair, Finance and Services Committee, Chair, Finance and Services Committee

I am sure that both of those posts would be warmly welcomed by all conscientious Clerks, but the serious point that the hon. Gentleman makes that colleagues are using works that are possibly in need of updating will I am sure have been heard by those who may be responsible for it.

Several hon. Members:

rose—

Photo of John Bercow John Bercow Chair, Speaker's Committee for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, Chair, Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, Speaker of the House of Commons, Speaker of the House of Commons, Chair, Speaker's Committee for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, Chair, Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission

Order. I should inform the House that the present Clerk of the House presented me with a signed copy of the sixth edition of his well-thumbed tome upon my election to the Chair. I hope that the House will feel that I have gained greatly from reading it cover to cover.