Nine students owe Durham Uni over £6000 for unreturned library books
One student alone owes the uni £890
Nine students owe Durham University over £6000 for unreturned library books, a freedom of information request by The Northern Echo reveals.
The fines, which come to a total of £6110, are comprised of charges for lost books and books returned after the agreed return date.
Despite the university only charging a maximum of £20 for an unreturned book, one student reportedly has fines totalling £890.
Eight other students also owe over £500 to the university.
These fines come after Durham Uni students faced a housing crisis last year, during which some students dropped out of uni entirely because of increased rent prices in the North East.
Durham University is one of just two North East universities who still impose library fees, with Teeside University cancelling all fines last year “as part of [its] cost of living support to students”.
The other university still using library fees, Newcastle University, only charges £1 per day for unreturned books.
A university spokesperson said: “We only charge fines for the late returns of library items where there is an active request from another borrower for that item, to ensure students who have requested books can access them.
“We offer free postal returns from the UK to support students returning items, so even if they are not on campus, they can return items at no cost to themselves via the post.
“Whether for late return or lost items, the maximum fine is £20 per book, considerably below the replacement cost.
“If any student believes they have good reason not to pay a library charge, for example medical reasons or extenuating personal circumstances, they can contact us to discuss this.”