UnityUK goes live in the first library authorities

UnityUK, the next generation resource sharing and interlibrary loan service from The Combined Regions (TCR), has gone live in the first three library authorities to move onto the new system. This represents the first phase of libraries to migrate to UnityUK and comes just six weeks after the announcement of the launch of the new service.

[UKPRwire, Sat Apr 08 2006] Derbyshire, Lincolnshire and Oxfordshire have moved over to UnityUK and are now using the service to search multiple library authority catalogues, to identify the location of resources they want and to manage interlibrary loan and resource sharing services for their customers.

Already a significant number of TCR library authority partners have signed up for UnityUK. These authorities will receive training and then be migrated to the new system in a series of phases over the coming months.

The three authorities going live in phase one will be using the first release of UnityUK. This release incorporates some 2.5 million holdings records from seven library authorities loaded against the bibliographic records within the LinkUK database. Holdings information from more libraries authorities will be incorporated into UnityUK during April, in readiness for the existing UnityWeb data load which is due to start in May 2006.

Martin Molloy, OBE, strategic director, cultural and community services, Derbyshire County Council, comments, “For many years Derbyshire County Council has used the Unity service for locating resources from outside our own stock. As a long-standing user, we were very excited about the new features that UnityUK will bring to our staff and users. New features such as the improved integration with our library management system, access to a wider collection of catalogues and improved real time holdings details will enable us to provide a more efficient service to our users. It is also rewarding to know that we will be one of the first participants in the first national network for resource sharing.”

A programme of training days, for new subscribers to the service, has been announced. Events are taking place around the UK and a full list of the dates and venues can be found on the new website for The Combined Regions, www.thecombinedregions.com. Training is provided as part of the UnityUK subscription and it is easy to book using the online registration service.

UnityUK is the latest generation of the established Unity service. UnityUK will, for the first time, deliver a national network for resource sharing for the UK as it brings together the union catalogues of The Combined Regions and LinkUK. The new service uses the latest resource sharing technology from world leaders OCLC PICA (incorporating FDI) who also host and manage the new service

UnityUK will be on show at the Library and Information Show on the 26th and 27th April, at the Pavilion, NEC, Birmingham. Visit stand 407 to see UnityUK in action.

Notes to editors:
About UnityUK
UnityUK is the upgraded web-based resource sharing and interlibrary loan service provided by The Combined Regions (TCR). UnityUK, to be launched in May 2006, delivers leading edge functionality for union catalogue, cross database searching, holdings and item location, interlibrary loan and resource sharing services. UnityUK uses the latest international resource sharing standards and integrates with all major library management systems in use in the UK today. UnityUK also links together the union catalogues of the TCR member libraries and LinkUK library resources, to provide the first national resource sharing service for the UK.

About The Combined Regions (TCR)
The Combined Regions (TCR) is the organisation behind the Unity resource sharing service. For more than 10 years, TCR has provided interlending services to its 140 member library organisations across the South West, North East, East Midlands, North East and Scotland. Under the Unity name, TCR’s resource sharing services began with a CD union catalogue, and in 2001 moved to become web-based. In February 2006, The Combined Regions announced the launch of a new and upgraded Unity service to be provided by OCLC PICA.

About OCLC PICA and Fretwell-Downing Informatics (FDI)
As the European library cooperative, OCLC PICA together with FDI offers a broad range of leading edge, high-tech solutions for professionals and end users of academic and public libraries, information centres of the government and health sector, museums, archives and other cultural institutions. Thousands of users daily rely on the OCLC PICA and FDI systems for efficient cataloguing, library management, retrieval, resource sharing and preservation.

From the head office in Leiden (NL), subsidiaries in Oberhaching (D) and Sheffield (UK), and regional offices in Birmingham, Paris, Cologne, Berlin, Basel, Melbourne and Kansas City, OCLC PICA B.V. is active on behalf of its two shareholders OCLC Inc. and Stichting Pica.
OCLC Online Computer Library Center Inc. is a non-profit organization and offers its services to 54,000 libraries in 109 countries and territories. More information about OCLC PICA and FDI can be found at www.oclcpica.org and www.fdisolutions.com.


For further information, contact:

Emily Haynes
Katie Anstock
Fretwell-Downing Informatics
Tel: +44 (0)114 281 6040

Mike Thornton
LinkUK Account Manager
Tel: +44(0)121 456 4656

Company: The Combined Regions

Contact Name: Catherine Dhanjal

Contact Email: catherine.dhanjal@theansweruk.com

Contact Phone: 0208 655 0953

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