Today I went to return books to Croydon library, only to be told I could not give them to staff, but had to check them in on a self-service terminal.

Croydon made me redundant some time ago, along with most of their other qualified librarians, and now wants me to check-in and check-out books so that it can make library assistants redundant as well.

Croydon introduced self-service terminals about 12 years ago but had to abandon them because of customer resistance – the new (private) regime has resolved this by saying we can no longer choose to be served by a human being.

Even Tesco has recently reduced the number of self-service tills because customers do not like them.

Croydon libraries used to be a Rolls-Royce public service – it is now a clapped out Mondeo, and the wheels are falling off.

South Croydon