Saturday, February 05, 2011

Libraries Saturday 5 February

Much has been written in the press about the threat to libraries...central government has cut funds to the counties who in turn are looking at ways to make savings. Here in Suffolk 29 libraries are under threat - the local council would possibly call it a volunteering opportunity - and the rural subsidised bus service may be decimated. My local library, Halesworth, is not under threat but pretty much all the ones surrounding it are. There was a good turn out today of people gathering signatures against the closures. The library was being used in a fairly typical fashion (5 lads - some with books - chatting on the sofas, some on the computers, toddlers on cushions hearing a story, all ages browsing and borrowing from the not over well stocked shelves - perhaps there has been a supportive surge in borrowing - a group of older people reading newspapers, a couple of meetings taking place upstairs; altogether a quietly pleasant, positive place to spend time). A place of value I think. Enid Stephenson ps. 200 protestors in the small town of Leiston, a large number in Bungay and at other places across Suffolk showed that people do appreciate public libraries and the professional staff.

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