Link to Accessible Catalogue

Annual Report

London Public Library 2014 Annual Report to the Community
A Message from your Board Chair and CEO

Online newspapers from 90 countries and in 44 languages, storytimes in the pool, a blue and white bus brimming with high-tech and handmade creativity, were a few of the many ways that your Library reached  out  to  Londoners in new and exciting ways in 2014.  London Public Library has always made innovation a priority, whether it is through the services and programs we deliver, the resources we provide or the spaces where Londoners connect.

In 2014, we had the exciting task of mapping out the future of the Library - a future that builds on this innovation and ensures that your Library continues to remain relevant to you. The 2014-2108 Strategic Plan: Library Space is Community Place, reflects the ideas and priorities you shared with us through our extensive community engagement process. Through the development of the Plan, our Library Board and staff realized that our vision to be London’s “Community Hub” had been validated.  Your input led us to articulate a new purpose statement that will guide the Library into the future: London Public Library strengthens people and neighbourhoods by creating connections that enrich lives, inspire discovery, foster creativity,  and expand possibilities.

With this purpose in mind, we are launching a truly exciting and meaningful era of Library service. LPL’s new User First Philosophy of customer service will guide and shape all services, spaces, policies and processes, and the relationships we develop with every library user and community partner.  What is important to you, is important to us! We will strive to create meaningful and exceptional experiences for our users, community partners, staff, volunteers and donors.

We had a successful year in 2014. Thanks are due to you, along with our knowledgeable staff, committed Library Board members, many community partners; dedicated volunteers and generous donors. We are grateful to the City of London and Province of Ontario for their ongoing support which ensures that Londoners have the range and quality of core library services they want and deserve. Special recognition is due to the Friends of the London Public Library for their ongoing friendship and support to value-added services and programs.

We are excited about 2015 as we continue to engage with our community in new and familiar ways to create the Library experiences that Londoners desire and need.

Gloria Leckie
Chair, London Public Library Board                  

Susanna Hubbard Krimmer
CEO and Chief Librarian, London Public Library


2014 Financial Information

Operating Revenue


Revenue ($)
City of London$19,022,746
Provincial Grants598,829
Federal Grants115,909
Fees, Rentals & Sundry 395,739
Other 152,808

Operating Expenditures

Source Expenditure ($)
Human Resources  $14,466,196
Facility Services*1,655,907
Purchased Services*567,296
Facilities Repairs & Maintenance*323,935
Program Services72,859
Furniture & Equipment*12,823

* Expenditures are shown before amortization of tangible capital assets. See Library website for the 2014 LPL Audited Financial Statements prepared according to PSAB sections 1200 Financial Statement Presentation and 3150 Tangible Capital Assets. The audited statements show amortization of $3,455,181 for capital assets such as buildings, computers, collections, library shelving, furniture, equipment and motor vehicles.

2014 Use Statistics
17,988 New Library Cards Issued

3,966,882 Items Borrowed

46.7% of Londoners are registered library card holders

33.84 Annual Library Use Per Capita

2,805,778 Library Visits

3,868,669 Website Visits

1,063,803 Reference Questions Answered

Your Library Board 2014 - 2018

We welcomed a new London Public Library Board in 2014.

London City Council announced appointments to Council’s civic bodies, including the London Public Library Board, with terms beginning in December 2014 and ending in November 2018.

Library Board outgoing 2014   
Library Board incoming 2014   
Gloria Leckie, Chair
Councillor Nancy Branscombe
Councillor Matt Brown
Jerry Colwell
Scott Courtice
Jeff Gillies
German Gutierrez
Josh Morgan
Donna Vachon
Gloria Leckie, Chair
Stuart Clark
Scott Courtice
Vicki Douvalis
Mariam Hamou
Councillor Anna Hopkins
Bassam Lazar
Councillor Tanya Park
Hannah Rasmussen
 2014 – 2017 Strategic Plan

On June 6, 2014, London Public Library launched, with excitement, your 2014 – 2017 Strategic Plan: Library Space is Community Place.

Your new Strategic Plan is built upon a wide-reaching community and staff engagement process that gave us the opportunity to hear directly from over 7,500 Londoners and learn from significant in-depth research and analysis.

Your Plan sets the compass for the next four years through these Strategic Priorities.

User First: We will provide an even more personalized service experience. 

Spaces and Places: We will provide exceptional and inspiring public places.

Stewardship: We will demonstrate LPL’s leadership, value and return on investment to the citizens of London. 

Collections and Resources: We will expand and improve access through a variety of formats and delivery platforms.

Current & Future Technology: We will harness the potential of technology and mobilize our technological response.


On April 17, 2014, your London Public Library Board approved a new Purpose Statement:

Our Purpose

LPL strengthens people and neighbourhoods by creating connections that enrich lives, inspire discovery, foster creativity, and expand possibilities.


Your Library offers a large variety of resources for Londoners to use, access and borrow. We continue to provide books, which are still in demand by readers and learners of all ages in our community. And we’re about so much more than books. Electronic formats and digital collections continue to be an important part of the services and resources your Library provides in our technological age.

350,836 Database searches 
59,070 eAudiobooks borrowed
146,458 Music CD checkouts
1,165,365 DVD checkouts
170,384 eBook checkouts, a 20.5% increase from 2013

Electronic Newspapers

We added PressReader to our digital collections in 2014, providing you with access to newspapers from across Canada and around the world. The service offers over 1,400 newspapers representing 90 countries and 44 languages, including 250 Canadian publications in English and French. Use of PressReader by Library users increased steadily, with over 2,500 items now being downloaded monthly. After English, the most popular language for newspapers being downloaded was Chinese. Next were Arabic, French and Spanish. Londoners are reading content in 36 different languages including Yiddish, Afrikaans and Icelandic. The service has expanded and now also offers over 1,000 magazines.
A trend we saw in 2014 was an increase in the use of mobile devices, over computers, to access the Library’s databases and other online services.

Electronic Magazines

The popularity of our Zinio  collection of electronic magazines continued to grow in 2014.

40,214 Checkouts; Checkouts of electronic magazines surpassed those of print magazines in 2014.

There are still many people in our community who rely on the Library for access to computers and the Internet, essential tools for today’s world, whether for accessing government information and forms, finding legal or health information, using online job application forms or connecting with online communities.

Online resources for English as a second language and citizenship

We added two new electronic databases to ou r digital collection in 2014 to meet the needs of new Canadians who are learning or upgrading English, or studying for their citizenship test,

My Canada is an English learning tool that teaches all about Canadian government, history, climate, science, culture and more. Great for preparing for the citizenship test while learning English.

Road to IELTS helps with preparation for the International English Language Testing System, an English proficiency test required by educational institutions and many employers.

Newcomers learning English rely on Library resources to help them become fluent. Rosetta Stone English, a program offered on a number of our computers, was used regularly for English lessons by 120 registered learners. The Library’s online Mango Languages program was used 597 times for ESL lessons. Total uses of Mango for all languages was 4,389.

Public Computers

179,042 Sessions of wireless internet use
569,090 Sessions of public computer use

To improve access to our public computer workstations we increased the session time to 120 minutes per day.


In response to requests from the public, scanners became part of the technology equipment offered at the Library in 2014.

Downloading eBooks

You continued to turn to us for help with downloading eBooks and Audiobooks to your devices. Library staff offer tutorial sessions, providing a step-by-step demonstration on downloading as well as an introduction to our digital catalogue and managing your account. Seventeen sessions, over one per month, were held at the Central Library last year.

Social Media

46,573 mentions, comments, shares, and likes

Thanks for continuing to engage with us on social media in 2014 as we posted news, stories and information about our services and programs.  Continue to look for us on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and new platforms. We love being part of your online community!

Family Literacy

To see a child respond to words, reading and stories is to see doors open. Your Library supports families in providing their children with opportunities for learning that lead to future success. We offer programs and resources that start at the beginning, building the foundation for early learning, then continue through the years of a child’s growth and development. We have resources for every age and learning level.

27,953 Storytime attendance
493 children benefitted from one-on-one volunteer support with reading

Read Around the Block: Supporting Family Literacy in the Community

The Library, along with our community partners, brought family literacy events into neighbourhoods in the Argyle and Carling-Thames communities. East London and Beacock branch libraries received a funding grant from the Child and Youth Network’s Family Centre Community Literacy Fund for a series of family events that promote learning through hands-on activities like games, puzzles, stories and crafts, plus educational apps on our donor-funded iPads. Fifteen Read Around the Block events were held in 2014 at a variety of locations, including schools, the Carling-Thames Family Centre, a local apartment building, a housing co-op complex, the Books and Breakfast Summer Program at Lord Elgin Public School, the East Lions Artisan Centre, and Beacock and East London branch libraries.  We think it’s important to support families in giving children a good start for future success.

Summer Reading Club

4,435 children participated in Summer Reading Club, making 15,109 visits over the summer

Reading over the summer helps children maintain their level of learning and prevent the summer brain drain while away from school. Offering children challenges and the chance to win prizes in our Summer Reading Club  keeps children interested and makes reading and learning fun!

The Festival of Trees™

The Festival of Trees™ came to London on May 9, 2014. London Public Library, in collaboration with Thames Valley District School Board and London District Catholic School Board, was proud to host the region’s satellite celebration for 1,500 excited school-age children at the Western Fair District. The day included workshops, author readings and award presentations. Fourteen Canadian children’s authors were in attendance hosting workshops and holding autograph sessions. Four of the authors were presented with a special regional award. Each author was introduced by a student who had written a speech especially for them. Many thanks to Library donors for their support of this event. The Festival of Trees™ is part of the Forest of Reading® program, Canada’s largest literary event for young readers.

Ranger Kara at the Library

TVO Kid’s Ranger Kara made a stop at the Central Library as part of the Read with Ranger Kara Tour that visited seven cities across Ontario in 2014.  She came to meet her fans, read to them and sign autographs. Like Ranger Kara, we’re always excited when kids get excited about reading. Attendance: 240 children with their families.

Maker Bus

MakerBus fun came to library locations across London from July 22 to August 14. Thanks to our sponsor, the Western Fair District, we were able to offer this program which had kids building, creating, tinkering, inventing and having fun while learning. The MakerBus team showed more than 490 people how to do lots of cool things like make a cell phone or tablet into a microscope, explore Makey Makey fun and create upcycled jewelery from corks, washers and pop tabs.

Your Community Place

Your Library is a place to learn and study. A place to get together with others in your community. It can be a place get away and enjoy some down time. To explore new ideas with films and talks. Enjoy poetry, music and art. Find out about services in the community. Remember the past with local history talks. Share in great family experiences with your children. Your Library offers programs for all ages and interests. Thank you for visiting our 16 locations almost 3 million times last year.

409 library volunteers contributed 9,823 hours
13,912 attended programs
148,085 active library users

Building Community and Making Art

The walls came alive with new murals at Beacock and Crouch branches as a result of community art projects lead by artist Jeremy Jeresky in the summer of 2014. A grant from the Trillium Foundation of Ontario provided funding for Jeremy and his New School of Colour to offer art programming for youth and adults facing social and economic barriers. Because the Library is a space for everyone and our branches are recognized neighbourhood destinations, it was a natural fit for Beacock and Crouch to be at the centre of these community development projects. With Jeremy’s instruction and guidance, participants, mostly youth and children, spent several weeks planning the mural, preparing walls and painting while building skills, confidence and community. Working with our partner agencies and Jeremy, the Library was able to be a part of projects that saw people in the Beacock and Crouch library neighbourhoods come together to create art and make a lasting impression.


We welcomed Gary Barwin as Writer-in-Residence at the Library in September 2014, a program we offered in partnership with Western University. Gary was available for appointments with writers at all levels, providing feedback on writing and discussing careers in the field.
He maintained office hours at both the Central Library and Western University and met with writers of all ages, from as young as ten years old to seniors.  Gary held 119 appointments at the Library. As well, he offered workshops at different library locations on topics like humour writing, self-publishing and writing for seniors.

The Writer-in-Residence program was sponsored by the Canada Council for the Arts, the James A. and Marjorie Spenceley Fund, Western’s Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Western’s Department of English and Writing Studies, and London Public Library. Special acknowledgement goes to the Canada Council for the Arts for funding support.

Gary Barwin, poet, novelist, children’s author and music composer,  started his position as Writer-in-Residence in September 2014.

Re-opening of Glanworth Branch

The Library, in partnership with FedDev Ontario through the Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund, and the community of Glanworth, who worked tirelessly to raise funds, re-opened Glanworth Branch Library in June 2014 after completion of renovations needed to meet accessibility standards.
Federal, Provincial and local dignitaries attended the opening ceremony with the Glanworth community.

Awesome Box for Teens

Creating on-the-spot programming for teens was the inspiration for the launch of the Awesome Box in 2014. Our Librarians wanted to offer activities for teens that worked with their busy, in-the-moment schedules. Awesome Boxes, which are kindly supported by Library donors, are filled with fun and interesting things to do and are available whenever teens are at the library.
A box could contain art supplies, a game, a mini craft project, magnetic poetry and more. The Teen Annex areas of every library location have Awesome Boxes. Ask for one when you come in!

Our pre-broadcast screening of Episode 1, Season 5 of Downton Abbey, shown in partnership with PBS affiliate station WQLN in Erie, PA, was a big hit with 350 people filling the Wolf Performance Hall.

Access for All

Your Library provides resources and services to everyone in our community, meeting the needs of so many in London, including collections in accessible formats, delivery to the homebound, access to computers and  information services, English learning resources for newcomers, and a place for families to come for homework help, storytime or play time. We are free and located in 16 neighbourhoods throughout the city.

“My English was very poor when I moved here. I used to study every day for nine months. After I finish classes I went to the Central Library to study. They have books about ESL, and audio and video. They have books with CDs. You can listen to the CD and follow the book. I learned a lot from that. I used Rosetta Stone at the library. It’s a good method of learning. The library is very important and it’s free. I got a lot from the library. I learned the language and it was very helpful for starting in Canada.”

Mustafa, London Cab Driver

Visiting Library Service
We make a difference in the lives of those who aren’t able to come to the Library themselves. We deliver print books, DVDs, magazines and audiobooks to close to 500 homebound members of our community. We provide different formats to meet the needs of those who are print-disabled. In 2014 the Library joined CELA, The Centre for Equitable Library Access, a national non-profit organization established by public libraries that provides collections for Canadians with print disabilities. CELA offers over 200,000 items that may be borrowed by those who are eligible, and that may be delivered through our Visiting Library Service. CELA offers a number of formats: audiobooks on disc, e-text that can be read with adaptive technologies, braille books and magazines, electronic braille materials and described movies. Also available through CELA is Bookshare, an accessible online library.

“To the wonderful person who chooses books for me. Reading helps to free me from my confines and to explore places in time, place and imagination. I’ll read anything you send. Thank you for your time and consideration.”
Colleen, user of Visiting Library Service

65,064 adult large print books borrowed
73,376 adult audiobooks borrowed

2014 Donors

Our donors are essential to supporting London Public Library in enriching lives and expanding possibilities for everyone in our community. Your Library supports early literacy initiatives, technology training and continuous learning through innovative programming and enhanced collections and spaces, all made possible through your generosity. Thank you, London Public Library donors, for working with us in opening doors and providing opportunities for all. Your support matters more than ever.

FedDev Ontario
Friends of the London Public Library
Estate of Kathleen Joyce Vander Sal
City of London (W12A - Community Mitigative Measures Fund)
Anne Keam
The Lawson Foundation
+1 anonymous donor
Altair Fund
Michael & Julie Boucher
Canadian Federation of University Women - London Club
Scott Courtice & Megan Winkler
Wayne Cranston
Jones Packaging Inc.

Susanna Hubbard Krimmer
Lambeth Optimist Club Inc.
London Middlesex Child Abuse Council
Diane MacMIllan
Hashim Nainar
Nature London

Old South Community Organization
Old South/Wortley Village Business Association
Scotiabank Donations and Sponsorships
Tecumseh Community School
Western Fair District
Winifred Burke
Jerry & Kimberly Colwell
Bertha Garcia
General Dynamics Land Systems - Canada
Dr. Charles George
Sonia Hartsell
Ellen Hobin
William Kelly
Kiwanis Club of Forest City - London Welfare Trust Account
Lynne McKechnie
Paddy Musson
Mary Nelson
Optimist Club of Byron
Lisa Powell
Eeva Stierwalt
The Sisters of St. Joseph of the Diocese of London Foundation
James Tiller
Dinh Ngoc Tran
Westminster Township Historical Society
+2 anonymous donors
Tony & Joy Abbott
Bob & Lynn Adams
Allan Anderson
James Anderson
Velda Andrew
Ronald & Angela Baker
Gina Barber
Donald & Heather Barclay
Patricia Barrett
Margaret Beallor
Joan Beavers
Steve Best
Beverley Biro
Mardelle Bishop
Jane Bondy
Books Plus
Christine Boriss
John Boyne
Lisa Bozyk
Julie Brandl
Doreen Brazier
Robert & Gail Brent
Margaret Brown
Robert Buck
Dorothy Bullock
Kenneth Bush
Jan Bushfield
Brenda Callaghan
Chill Ice Cream
City Hall Charity Chest Fund
Bruce & Mary Lois Cooper
Kate Corcoran
Murray & Barbara Cosens
Jim Cressman
Wendy A. Crocker
Jody Culham
Delilah Deane Cummings
A. M.  Dawes
Noreen De Shane
Janan Dean
Rudi Denham
Peter Derrick
Marylyn L. Dickson
Garry & Nancy Dodman
Martin Douglas
Vicki Douvalis
William Doyle & Sonia Debenetti-Doyle
Mike Drabick
Betty Duffield
Bradley Dundas
Helen Dundas
Charles Dunham
Brian & Kathy Dunn
James & Dorothy Eastwood
A. & S. Edwards
Jim & Liz Etherington
Johanne Gillin-White
Megan Gleed
James & Eva Good
Roseanne Greene
Annie Grindstaff
Helen Guthrie
John & Mary Hamilton
Richard & JoAnne Hammond
Linda Hardy
Charlotte Ann Hawthorne
Elizabeth Heinicke

Walter Heywood & Lorrie Lefebvre
Rona Hickson
Grant & Lily Hopcroft
Les Horwath
Paul Robinson Hovey
Gord Hume
Kathleen Husson
Susan Huston
Jim Hutchinson
Daphne Jarvis
Marian Jenkins
Linda Jones
Mark Kearney
Harold & Katherine Keeling
Arlene Keener
Robert Kelly M.D.
Shelley Kempling
Grace King
Kiwanis Club of North London
Kirsten Knight
Wilma Lambert
Vic & Grace Laursen
Gloria Leckie
Rosine Levy
Librarians Without Borders - UWO Chapter
Libro Financial Group
Rosemary Logan
London Condominium Corporation #15
London East Lions Club
London Public Library Staff
Lynette Lowry
Jan & Richard Lubell
Sandra MacKenzie
Doug MacLeod
Anne Marie Madziak & Janice Marchant
Marion Marchant
Susan Marth
Eileen Mather
G. A. McBurney
Wendy McCaul
William J. McClelland
Doug & Julie McDermid
Jerry McEachern
Roy & Ann McKenzie
W. Darcy McKeough
Catherine McLachlin
Libby McMillan
Margaret Anne McNally
Jennifer-Anne Meneray
Middlesex-London Health Unit
Eleanor Miller
Roslyn Moorhead
Louise Moorhouse
Josh & Melanie Morgan
Louise Morley
Yvonne Morrell
Anne Morrison
Tom Murphy
M. A. Nisbet
Volker Nolte
Christina Nurse
Colm O’Sullivan
Cliff & Mary Oliver
Optimist Club of East London
Viola Poletes

Di & Frank Pratt
Jacqueline Radix
Linda & Bill Ratcliffe
Judith Reid
Betsy Reilly
Gay Reynolds
Joan Robertson
Jennifer Robinson
Wilson & Judith Rodger
Deborah & Thomas Rosehart
M. E. Jean Roth
Adele Roy
Rick Rumney
Jeff & Judy Ann Sadler
Sandra Safran
Robert & Peggy Sanderson
Johanna Scannell
Catherine Schaus
Peggy Schucht
Carolyn Scott
Darwin Semotiuk
B. Shennan
Ian & Elaine Simpson
Nicholas Skinner
Joseph Smith
William Sorensen
Carmen Sprovieri
Kathy Stark
James & Sharon Stewart
Laurena Storey
Archie & Ruth Stover
Students of Lord Elgin Public School
Paul & Connie Sullivan
Lynne Swanson
Frances Taylor
Bonnie Teevan
Beth Tellaeche
Don & Nanette Thierry
Liz Thompson
Betty Tracy
Susan Traill
Virginia Tremblay
K. L. Turner
United Way - London & Middlesex
Syd Usprich
Donna Vachon
Barbara Van Haarlem
Pat Vande Sompel
Sally Vernon
Suzanne Walker
Nancy Ward
Ida Wark
Lynn & Keith Watson
Joan M. Watt
Bertie Watts
Western University - The Student Success Centre
Kathy Whelan McNiff
Kathy Whitworth
George Williams
Heidi Williams
Lynn Williams
Jean Wintonyk
T. Wisniewski
Women’s Probus Club of London
Mair Zamir
+ 85 anonymous donors
Every effort has been made to provide an accurate listing of our donors. We apologize for any errors or omissions that may have occurred.
 A Sister Remembers Through Giving
Sitting in the windowless room with mattresses lining the walls and a clutter of music recording equipment, an electric piano, mixing board and synthesizer, Nick tells me he has just recorded what he calls his MIDI extravaganza, a piece of music he’s titled Altair, after the brightest star in the constellation Aquila.

My brother had experienced brain injuries twice in his life, the first time nearly 30 years prior to this moment in his basement, when he fell from a conveyer belt onto a concrete floor at the local paper mill. His behaviour changed after his accident, but his deterioration has been a long, sad experience with brain injury and mental illness.

Nick started the music. It was awesome. It shook the walls and sounded like it should be the theme for a space movie. Nick said, “I got you with that one, huh,” as it became obvious that I loved the work.

Sadly, he ended up living on the street. I often wondered if he was safe and feared for him every time I heard a news report of a homeless person found frozen to death. Late one January night Nick took his life in a Toronto park where he wasn’t found until the next day.
As Nick’s sole heir I took some of my inheritance and started a charitable fund that I named the Altair Fund after that awesome piece of music he had created.

Every year, with the help of my husband and three sons, we give a donation from the fund to worthy causes in a variety of areas, including music and the arts, animals and the environment, mental health and addictions, children and education, and organizations that work with people living on the street.

Having each of us participate in choosing a charitable organization that receives grant money from the Altair Fund has involved our children in philanthropy, an activity that we value both as our civic duty and a great source of joy.

Nick once said to me, “the world can be found in books.” Giving to the London Public Library seemed like a natural fit. It was a way to help my adopted community and make a donation that matched our areas of focus. I think Nick would be pleased that we chose the Library as an Altair Fund grant recipient. By helping this wonderful charity you too can enhance access to books, films and music for all Londoners.

We'd Love to Hear Your Story!

Thanks to all the wonderful Londoners who share their Library stories with us.  You can find “at my library” stories in our Access magazine and on our YouTube channel:

251 Dundas Street,
London, ON N6A 6H9

“And when we go to the library we see our neighbours and we see the other children in our neighbourhood and it’s a space for all of us to come and meet and talk. So it’s really neat. It’s sort of like a community centre for us, and activities and Books for Babies, those things just really bring the community together.”
“at my library”, Access, Summer 2014