HL Deb 25 June 1997 vol 580 c166WA
Lord Lucas

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Under which clauses of which Acts, and under which secondary legislation, the British Library has a right to receive copies of printed works gratis.

Lord McIntosh of Haringey

Section 15 of the Copyright Act 1911 (as amended) provides for the publisher of every book published in the United Kingdom to deposit a copy of it with the British Library, at his own expense, within one month of publication. The term "book" for this purpose has a wide meaning and includes journals, newspapers, pamphlets, sheets of letter-press, sheets of music, maps, plans, charts and tables. Categories of material which are exempted from deposit, including trade catalogues, advertisements, local passenger timetables, calendars and wall charts, are set out in regulations made under the Copyright (British Museum) Act 1915 and the British Museum Act 1932. Under the Theatres Act 1968, scripts of new plays publicly performed in Great Britain must be deposited with the British Library. Reciprocal arrangements exist with the Republic of Ireland. Under the Irish Copyright Act 1963, as amended by the National Cultural Institutions Act 1997, publishers are required to deposit at the British Library a copy of every book published in the Republic.