• Ebook lending and libraries – Society of Authors.  Letter to Ed Vaizey: “libraries are an essential resource and should receive sufficient funding to update, maintain and augment stock and ensure that an exciting and comprehensive range of books are available for reference and loan. We believe that books, whether physical or digital, must be at the core of any library. We believe that access to ebooks within the library and the ability to borrow them from the library will be increasingly important. However we remain strongly of the view that remote lending of ebooks is not at present an essential or primary role of an efficient library service and that plans to allow remote e-lending must be carefully thought through and managed”.  Problems inc. undermining book prices, piracy, lending limits, PLR must be implemented for e-books.”

“We also wish to remind you that section 43 of the Digital Economy Act 2010 extends PLR to audiobooks and ebooks “lent out” from library premises for a limited time and that these payments have never been implemented. This is patently unjust and we urge that this provision be brought into force and that extra funds be made available to cover PLR payments for such lending. We note also that there is an argument that PLR should not be paid where libraries are being run by volunteers. This would again be unfair and we should be grateful if you would confirm that PLR will continue to be paid, whoever runs the library.”

  • Fight privatisation: save our libraries – Socialist.  GLL threatened legal action against the strike. Strike action on 30 April and 1 May had to be postponed. But this is only temporary. A new notice will be issued and strike action will begin again. This is a campaign that Unite is determined to see through.” … “GLL have made clear that following the transfer, there will be a “harmonisation” process, in reality to bring library staff down to GLL levels. GLL negotiators have confirmed that new library staff will be employed on poorer pay and conditions.”
  • Maternity leave, libraries and mobility scooter – Vanessa Feltz on BBC London Radio (1.29 to 1.33).  [I have not listened to this myself as the player constantly crashed on my machine.  However, I understand Vanessa was very supportive, with the subject being Upper Norwood Joint Library – Ian.]
  • Murdoch and News Corporation scandal wasn’t about Conservative Party sleaze: but it is now – Telegraph.  “Here are the News International crowd: Tony Blair, Gordon Brown, Peter Mandelson, David Miliband, David Blunkett, John Reid, Tessa Jowell, Michael Gove, George Osborne, William Hague. David Cameron, John Whittingdale and Jeremy Hunt (as well as Mr Hunt’s brainless sidekick, Ed Vaizey) should also be added to this list.”


Local News

  • Buckinghamshire – Time or cash needed to save libraries – Buckinghamshire Advertiser.  Gerrards Cross Library is next in line to become community led, but the people in charge of the change have said more volunteers are needed.” … “85,000 people used the library in 2010. In future, it is proposed that there will be only two permanent members of staff, funded by BCC, as well as the volunteers.” … “The library will cost the town £8,000 a year to run, which will be made up from donations. Gerrards Cross Community Library working party has already raised £23,000, £19,000 of which came from Tesco, as part of the £100,000 donated to the community after opening in 2010.” … “BCC has also given a £30,000 grant to be used over five years to keep the library open.”
  • Cheshire East – Budget cuts hit “lifeline” mobile library service – This is Staffordshire.   2 out of 3 mobiles to close.  “Conservative councillor Brian Silvester, below, who represents the Willaston and Rope ward, near Crewe, said: “The mobile library is an important service and it needs to be retained with the maximum coverage possible.”Labour councillor Sam Corcoran, who represents Sandbach Heath and East, said: “Cutting the mobile libraries from three to one would save £95,000 a year. The Conservatives claim the cuts to services are necessary because of lack of money, but they can find £80,000 for a temporary chief executive for three months.”” … “Consultation on the cuts is taking place until Wednesday, May 23. Residents can respond at”
  • Cornwall – New chapter begins as library opens in cafe – This is Cornwall.   “On Friday the ribbon was cut on the new community library based inside the Rest and Play Café in Roche.” … “The community library is a collaboration between Cornwall Council and the café, which was opened inside a former church hall in December last year.” … “The café will also be holding Story Sack sessions on Monday, May 14, 21 and 28, which give youngsters the chance to use their favourite stories and get creative. Villagers will continue to receive visits from the fortnightly mobile library and will also be able to view and reserve books from the library catalogue and have them delivered to the café.”
  • Croydon – Trouble in Greenwich with GLL – Save Croydon Libraries.   GLL is a contender for taking over services in Croydon.  The strike in Greenwich against it is noted. “The article claims that the council refused to accept a potential compromise whereby staff would be seconded over to GLL, rather than transferred, which would give staff staying as council employees a better safeguard against attacks on pay and conditions. Unite assert that this dispute has highlighted the limited protection offered by TUPE. The legislation only gives protection at the point of transfer. “
  • Dorset – Portland: mobile replaces Underhill service – View Online.  The island’s Underhill Library closed at the end of April and the mobile library service began visiting the area on Monday, April 30th. ” … “With the library service needing to reduce its annual budget by £800,000, county council members last year agreed to retain 25 libraries and offer up the remaining nine to be managed and maintained by local communities. Portland Underhill was the county council library which issued the lowest number of books and other items.  Talks with community representatives failed to spark any interest in taking over the running of the building from Dorset County Council. “
  • Gloucestershire – Library challenge dismissed – Wilts and Glos Standard.   ““The committee did not accept the call-in and found no grounds to overturn the decision taken,” she said. “Therefore the decision stands and will be implemented.”

Kent – new History and Library Centre “The new centre is purpose built to protect and give people access to more of our archive material, and to provide a 21st century library in the heart of Kent. It houses around 14 kilometres of historic material relating to Kent dating back to 699 AD and is the place to come for anyone interested in local history. There is a community history area, archive search room, digital studio and a large space for displays and events.”

  • Milton Keynes – Volunteering with MK libraries – Milton Keynes Council.   “We are initially looking for volunteers to shelve returned library stock at Milton Keynes Central Library. Here’s how you can get involved: “You will shelve library stock and assist in the tidying of our stock. You should have an interest in library work and ideally be able to give a commitment of at least two hours each week. The duties of a Volunteer Library Shelver will involve standing, pushing trolleys and reaching up to high shelves and therefore a good standard of fitness, mobility and stamina is required.You are required to have good skills in English and numeracy.Applicants will be asked to undertake a shelving test.”
  • Staffordshire – Call for thousands to be spent extending library – Express & Star.   “Local politicians are keen to see Great Wyrley Library at Quinton Court Shopping Centre expanded into an empty adjacent unit. South Staffordshire MP Gavin Williamson and county councillors Kath Perry and Mike Lawrence have called for major improvements to be made at the library, in Wardles Lane. Mr Williamson believes a cash injection would be a great boost for the library and wider community.”. Community cafe, in particular, needed.
  • Surrey – Judge quashes Surrey Council library move – BookSeller.  “Surrey County Council’s decision to remove paid staff from 10 of its libraries has been quashed. Mr Justice Wilkie made a Court Order yesterday (2nd May) to quash the decision, which would have meant the libraries would have to be kept open by volunteers. The order brings to a close an application for judicial review brought by Surrey residents Lucy Williams and Nicholas Dorrington, alleging that the council had failed to discharge its public sector equality duties under the Equality Act 2010.”