The State Library was next on the agenda for me. Here the first stop was the River Pump Room, which draws water from the river and creates chilled water for the entire Cultural Centre
Every item that enters the collection has to be treated to ensure no creepy crawlies get in and cause damage. Two people sit here for five days turning each page of a book and brushing it while these extractors suck baddies (if there are any) off the page - what a job!!!
If something is found in an item, it's locked into this shower-type stall, oxygen is removed and nitrogen pumped in and the item is left for a period, and that kills what ever was in the book. It's apparently much more "humane" than using pesticides - and of course much healthier for the humans!!!
Here is the repository - all 85 metres of compactus on each side of the room. Few library staff even get in here.
We were next taken to the conservation area - the work that goes into conservation is mind-blowingly labour intensive and painstaking. One big thing is that anything they do has to be reversible, in case, in 50 years, someone realises that what is being done now isn't such a good idea. One aspect of this is that every Monday they cook their own adhesive!!