The Vancouver Island Regional Library branches in Queen Charlotte and Sandspit rank among the busiest in the system on a per capita basis, according to the VIRL’s latest annual report.
In Queen Charlotte, residents took out an average of 16 books each in 2005, and in Sandspit, residents checked out an average of almost 20 books each.
Only a few of the library system’s 39 branches had higher circulation per person, like Hornby Island and Gabriola Island.
The branches in Masset and Port Clements, on the other hand, had some of the lowest borrowing rates. In Masset, residents took out an average of 7.6 books over the year, and in Port Clements, the rate was 7.1 books per person.
The lower rate might be explained by another section of the annual report, which lists the open hours for each branch. Port and Masset are open only seven and 14 hours a week, respectively, compared to 22 hours a week for the Queen Charlotte branch. Many of the branches on Vancouver Island are open more than 40 hours a week. The Sandspit branch is open seven hours a week.
The stats also show that residents of Queen Charlotte keep their library staff working hard. The Queen Charlotte branch answered a whopping 2,556 reference questions during 2005 – that’s more than one question for every person living in the village. Staff answered 765 questions in Masset, 177 questions in Port, and just 70 questions in Sandspit.
Program attendance was highest at the Queen Charlotte branch, with 415 participants. In Masset, 173 people attended library programs like story time, while eight attended in Port and none in Sandspit.
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