Edinburgh library book returned 42 years late!

By June 4, 2019Libraries, News

A book was returned to an Edinburgh library 42 years late but the hefty fine has been waived.

The book was handed in at the Fountainbridge library by the daughter of the original borrower who neglected to return the book by the 12th March 1977.

The novel in question, The Olmec Head by David Westheimer, was 15,417 days overdue -apparently a record for the city’s library service. The £77 fine was waived as a goodwill gesture.

City of Edinburgh Council’s education convener, Ian Perry, told BBC Scotland:

“Our library staff couldn’t believe their eyes when the lady came in with this long overdue book. You occasionally get books returned after a year or two but 42 years – some 15,417 days – must be some kind of record and shows how much Edinburgh citizens love their libraries! Most people might feel a bit guilty about a late book or not even bother to return one so we’re delighted it is now back in our hands.

This kind-hearted gesture also acts as a gentle reminder to anyone who has any overdue books not to be afraid of handing them back – in this unique case we didn’t feel it was appropriate to impose the £77 fine and waived it as gesture of goodwill.”

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