SWRLS was set up in 1937 to provide a Union Catalogue for the libraries in the region. It continues this work today in two different joint catalogue schemes.
Unity was originally set up in 1995 as a joint venture between SWRLS and Libraries NW (LNW), now known as NW Libraries Interlending Partnership. The Combined Regions (TCR) was then formed, to own and manage the system and in July 2001, Unity became a web-based application, and was renamed UnityWeb.
UnityUK, the UK's first national resource sharing service was launched in April 2006 as a result of a new partnership between TCR and OCLC. It brings together the union catalogues of TCR and LinkUK to offer a single unified service. Working in partnership with the the Consortium or Research Libraries, (CURL) now Research libraries UK (RLUK), the UnityUK service also integrates COPAC as a key resource for research materials.
The new service offers real-time availability checking through live links to OPACs and SWRLS members are encouraged to contribute their holdings data to UnityUK free of charge. Please contact the Director, for details of how to do this.
Members are also entitled to a reduced-rate UnityUK subscription.
More information about UnityUK can be found at www.combinedregions.com.
In October 2009 SWRLS and OCLC announced a major collaborative project to provide a regional catalogue via WorldCat Local in the SW. It will initially see eight public library authorities in the region using WorldCat Local as their shared end user discovery service in 2010. Library authorities in Bournemouth, Bath & NE Somerset, Bristol, North Somerset, Somerset, South Gloucestershire, Plymouth and Wiltshire are currently working with OCLC to implement a discovery interface that will enable users to search and place reservations on materials held across the South West region.
A summary of the presentation to the AGM 2009 can be viewed here: /assets/wcl presentation for graeme_oct 13 2009a.pdf
Please note that Wisdom has now been withdrawn.