Sunday, 12 December 2010

Campaign against library closures

I almost spoiled my breakfast this morning reading Kate Mosse's piece about library closures.  Of all the deliberate nastiness.  So as a former librarian I could as a Big Society volunteer go and issue books at my local library could I?

Well maybe, except we now have self-service machines installed.  I know this has been the trend in many academic libraries for years - my friends have the scars to prove how such a move is the thin end of the wedge in service provision.

My library is one of the original Carnegie libraries that made such a difference to the provision of libraries in this country.  So I'm not against private donations; the problem is these days they don't usually come with such vision.  And I also acknowledge that book provision has to be where readers need it and for some libraries are still too elitist.  But since school library provision is being squeezed at the same time, where would be the place for books and reading that had no  political bias, no private motives and no commercial profit needs.

Seems to me we already have the perfect solution.  But hey what do I know?  I only know that even coming from a home where books were welcomed, the library over the canal bridge opened up a world to me that I had no idea existed.  Even without the career in libraries, my life would have been so much poorer without being at the least a library user.

I've found the following site of author Alan Gibbons and signed up for his petition.

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