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The Circle of Officers of National and Regional Library Systems (Conarls) has for many years brought together representatives of the Regional Library Systems in England, the British Library, National Library of Scotland, the Irish Library Council and Interlending Wales. A representative of the Forum for Interlending is also a co-opted member.


The Conarls Working Group was formed on 1st April 2009 as part of the amalgamation of The Combined Regions with Conarls. The Group continues the work of Conarls, in particular:

  • maintaining the Inter-Regional Unit (IRU) Cost Scheme, sometimes known as the ‘Conarls rate’;
  • providing guidance and information about the Joint Fiction Reserves (JFRs);
    maintaining a database of non-English language fiction collections;
  • providing advocacy and guidance on resource discovery, sharing and delivery matters

More information about Conarls and its members can be found on the organisation's website. The Regional Librarian represents Libraries and Information East Midlands at meetings of Conarls.


In October 2000 the Conarls inter-regional unit (IRU) scheme came into operation and continues to attract new members through its competitive pricing for loans between member organisations. The current Conarls rate, as of August 2014, is £6 per item lent. (BL Standard Loans are £11.80 )


Currently there are 462 members taking part and a full list of participants can be found here: IRU scheme. The scheme is open to any libraries that wish to participate - the only requirements are that participants:

  • Have a BLDSC customer code number,
  • follow the "rules" of the scheme
  • register with Conarls so that everyone knows who is participating.

For more information about the scheme or to register, please email Conarls using the 'Contact us' form: Conarls