The Bindery Section is responsible for the preservation of materials for the Central Library System. The section oversees the commercial binding by outside vendors of approximately 20,000 volumes per year of both monographs and serials from 18 central library locations. In addition the bindery treats materials in-house that are not suitable for commercial binding. These treatments can include paper mending, rebinding, case and box making and portfolios. Approximately 12,000 items are treated annually.
The other important function of the Bindery section is disaster recovery. We respond as a first line of defence to calls from all over the University of Toronto campus, as well as providing advice and assistance in disaster and emergency situations to the wider community. Disasters can occur in many different forms but the most common for a library is water damaged materials, either as the aftermath of a fire or because of a flood. The Bindery section staff co-ordinate the disaster recovery operation which can involve assessment, air drying, packing for freeze-drying, cleaning, mending, and rebinding the damaged materials.