• Pinterest Board Sefton.  Devon also has one.


  • In pictures: Scots libraries turned into works of art – BBC. Some lovely murals and pictures have transformed the exteriors of several Scottish public libraries to celebrate Book Week Scotland.
  • Library: A World History by James WP Campbell and Will Pryce: review – Guardian. Review of book on the most beautiful libraries rather than, apparently, the ones most people actually use. “It’s a strange world history of libraries, though, that doesn’t glance at the dismal goings-on elsewhere in Britain. ” … “it might have been nice to include Palmers Green library in these pages or, better yet, one of those on the brink in Gloucestershire,HertfordshireLincolnshireMoray. Because the buildings in The Library: A World History aren’t really the libraries of the world; they’re the libraries of the few.”
  • Library cuts ‘worse in deprived north’ – BookSeller. “The Joseph Rowntree Foundation interim report, Coping with Cuts? Local Government and Poorer Communities, shows poorer areas of England and Scotland are facing cuts of £100 per head more than affluent areas. The report calculates that local government spending is set to fall by 30% in real terms between 2008 and 2015 in England. As well as cuts disproportionately affecting poorer areas, cuts are also having a great impact on the north than on the south, with a difference of £69 per head. The report also warns that councils are running out of places to make efficiency savings, leading to more cuts on frontline services, such as libraries.”
  • Magical Mum and the bookish rescue – And So We Begin. A story in support of libraries and to remind people of how magical they are. “Jacob, Ruby and Mimi hugged their Mum who smiled a magical smile. And Mrs Jamkins smiled at all of the rustling books as she was a person who already knew that they had a magic all of their own. “Meow,” said Mr Silverfish, which meant, “Thank you for saving the library, Magical Mum.”.
  • Martha Lane Fox stands down as UK digital champion – Guardian. ” Lane-Fox said she takes credit for having prodded the government into creating its single portal, for starting the RaceOnline 2012 project to get everyone online, and for creating the “champion” model for digital inclusion which has been adopted across Europe.” … “Some analysts have suggested that the fall in the number of people who are not online, or have never used the internet, is principally determined by time: older people who had never used the internet have died, while those who had used the internet when younger now comprise part of the older cohort of the population.”
  • Panlibus Issue 30 – Capita. Articles include “Library of Birmingham: Rewriting the Book”. “Silver Linings: How Leeds City Council moved library management into the Cloud” and “Changes ahead for library RFID: Latest news about standards and other developments”.
  • Yes, Prime Minister – Question Everything. “I had a surgery meeting (he is my local MP) with David Cameron. Like I said in my last post I could have spent 15 minutes moaning about all the ills in public library world but it won’t achieve much … I showed him the ever increasing corporate recharges (not librarians! HR, property costs, etc) for Oxfordshire and told him there was similar stuff going on up and down the land where authorities geographically close together are cutting front line provision but because there’s a artificial line separating them not looking to share these huge costs. … Back to Cameron, he has said he is going to get his policy unit to look into what is going on in the Triborough and over in Ireland where they’re standardising their IT systems and processes and get back to me, I have sent though some documents. I mentioned the complete lack of leadership from the DCMS on libraries and he said he would speak to Vaizey.”

International news

  • 7-Eleven library — creative Fresno owners show they care – Fresno Bee (USA). “The catch to lure kids? A free Slurpee or hot chocolate for every book read and summarized in a short book report. The public library is far away, and checking out books at the 7-Eleven is a “double treat,” Brian said, because he loves reading and Slurpees.”
  • Be Thankful for Libraries – Taking Note (USA). “…  libraries serve 96.4% of the US population.  While that does not mean that nearly everyone uses a public library, they could if they wanted to. Public libraries are aggressive because they have to be; they need people coming through their doors, and so they provide internet access, loans of DVDs and more, all with the endgame of promoting literacy.”
  • Need for public libraries – Arab News (Saudi Arabia). “The government in partnership with the private sector must introduce the concept of public libraries in each and every district in all cities across the Kingdom.”
  • Public library makerspaces – Shannon Barniskis (USA). “In one of my current studies I am interviewing library directors who have/have not considered adding a makerspace to their libraries. I am getting the most interesting quotes from all of these people”:

“the library is the space where creativity happens … Magic is what the library needs to do … if he [Neil Gaiman] could write something on the wall of every library, he would just, in the children’s section, write “And then what happened?” … Makerspaces lure people who thought library was about books and didn’t have anything to offer them.”

  • Tumbling and Pinning – Illinois Libraries Matter (USA). “Tumblr is important because it has 141 million users, it’s the 14th most visited website today, and it’s a way to reach a trendy, self-selected group of folks aged 18-30.  Only a few librarians, and fewer libraries, have embraced it so far.” …
  • Veritable and vital treasure: Manatee County’s public libraries – Bradenton Herald (USA). “Utilization of online databases surged more than 80 percent over the just ended last fiscal year; Internet workstations and wifi use jumped a combined 37 percent, and eBook checkouts rose 34 percent. Overall over the year, library usage of all print and digital material surpassed 3.1 million — a record. That should send a signal to Manatee County government and commissioners that this library system is a vibrant and vital part of the community, an essential connection for the public to access information that informs, educates, entertains and advances careers. The value that public libraries return to the community is well worth the investment.”

“The Central Library continues to evolve into a community center where creativity, technology and social services are key to driving the increase in traffic. Services include early literacy programs designed to boost children up to third grade so they are best prepared for school. Other youth-oriented programs target science, technology, engineering and math as well as the arts. With annual comic book conventions and other special events for teens — like the recent Doctor Who party and a celebration of International Games Day with table-top games and Wii, the library long ago dusted off the now outdated perception of being a stuffy place.”


UK news by authority

  • Derbyshire – High Peak mobile libraries could face the axe – Buxton Advertiser. “Berlie Doherty, of Edale, said she was “appalled” at the prospect of axing the service in light of Derbyshire County Council’s plans to launch a consultation into reducing the provision. She said: “To remove the mobile library service is to cut off an intellectual life-line, particularly for disabled people and the elderly. It’s so difficult for people to get a to a library on public transport in rural areas. It’s appalling.”

“Derbyshire was so proud of the fact it kept all its libraries open in the last round of budget cuts. It was brilliant that they were able to do this. But it does feel like this is the beginning of a very slippery slope.”

  • Derbyshire – Public consultation plan for mobile library service – Ashbourne News Telegraph. All mobiles may go: “Its mobile fleet currently consists of two large maximum capacity vehicles and eight smaller standard mobile libraries. They make almost 1,300 individual stops accounting for 17 percent of total library issues and seven percent of all library visits.”
  • Hertfordshire – Libraries consultation countdown: have your say – Hertfordshire Council (press release). “With just five weeks to go, Hertfordshire residents are being urged to make sure they have their say in a major countywide library consultation before it closes on 31 December 2013. Already more than 8,000 residents have completed questionnaires as part of the consultation over the future shape of libraries in the county. Hertfordshire County Council is developing a new 10 year strategy for libraries to ensure they continue to provide a modern and relevant service. Key future challenges include meeting community needs, meeting customer expectations, embracing technology and ensuring sustainability.”
  • Lambeth – Take 5 mins right now to help us save libraries – Lambeth Save Our Services. “Lambeth citizens face unprecedented hardship through this period of austerity and in these times we believe more than ever we need access to information, literature and the digital world. The following is what we believe Lambeth’s public library service should provide (as outlined by Voices for the Library)
  • Lincolnshire – Council uses data for the wrong Thurlby during library consultation – Stamford Mercury. “they couldn’t understand why the village, which has about 1,000 homes and more than 2,000 residents, hadn’t been included in the tier three category, comprising communities with at least 550 households. Instead Thurlby had been placed with villages like Haconby and Aslackby, which have populations of less than 500, and would only receive the home library service.”
  • Lincolnshire – Protesters took to city streets to say ‘no’ to library closures – This is Lincolnshire. ““We will carry on unless the council change their mind. We will not give up its too important a cause – keeping the libraries running.” … “A protest is planned outside County Hall, Newland on Tuesday December 3 at 9.30am before the decision on the future of libraries is made.”
  • Lincolnshire – Protests against library closures planned today – This is Lincolnshire. “A read’a’thon is taking place at Branston library this afternoon and a demonstration will be happening outside Central Library in Lincoln.”
“Luton Council passed responsibility for libraries, museums and culture to the Trust 5 years ago. The Trust receives millions of pounds from Luton Airport in gift aid plus Council money. Over half of this money is for libraries. As a charity they are not covered by the freedom of information act and Trevor Holden, CEO of the Council, has confirmed in writing that they see no detailed accounts. He says that they are responsible to their own Trustees and the Charity Commission. This means that the Council does not know how much is spent on libraries or anything else. We know £200,000 was lost on a fair in 2012 but that is not shown on the Charities website. Mostly it shows meaningless general incomings and outgoings. The 10,000 and 1,000 petitions for Wigmore and Sundon Park Libraries were described by the CEO of the Trust as “just signatures” and have been completely ignored. The flawed consultation received 4,000 from the whole town and never gave the option of keeping these libraries.” Luton – Fighting library closures by Unelected, Unaccountable and Unfit Luton Cultural Trust – Libraries of Luton Arise.
  • Liverpool – New look Central Library named city’s top attraction – Liverpool Echo. “The library was named number one out of 124 attractions in the city by travel review site TripAdvisor. It means it is the only public lending library in any one of the major UK cities to take the top spot.  The library, which opened in May after a £50m restoration, achieved its accolade based on independent reviews on the site and has a five star rating which is the highest score possible.”
  • Moray – Bid to save four Moray libraries fails – Northern Scot. ” Vivien Hendry, who helped lead the campaign, admitted yesterday (Thursday) that those efforts had been unsuccessful. All four libraries are scheduled to close tomorrow (Saturday). Ms Hendry said: “I have been gathering further evidence for consideration by the advocate who has been advising me in relation to the possibility of raising judicial review proceedings against Moray Council in the Court of Session. “However, having received that legal advice, I have with great regret decided that legal action can not presently be taken forward.”
  • Nottingham – Bakersfield Library – Nottingham Council. “Nottingham City Council Library and Information Services is currently undergoing a period of consultation concerning the future of Bakersfield Library. The options being considered include:     1. Close Bakersfield Library and redirect service users to Sneinton Library. Sell the current site.     2. Provide a reduced service at an alternative venue run by volunteers using donated books. 3. See if there are any community groups able and willing to continue to run some form of library provision from the existing building”
  • Sefton – Pinterest board – Pinterest. Pictures/websites divided into areas of interest such as “online resources” and “summer reading challenge”.
  • Sheffield – Libraries are more important than offices – Star / Letters. “The council say they need to make substantial cuts in their budget and therefore cutbacks in the library service are necessary. But now we hear that they have agreed to spend an additional £0.5 million on council offices in Burngreave. This is in addition to the £1.2 million spent over the last two years and £330,000 which has already been committed in this financial year. Their management of our city’s finances is, in my opinion, shambolic and the libraries are an easy target.” … “this lack of publicity about the council’s meeting was because it was nothing more than a box ticking exercise.”
  • West Berkshire – Fight is on for library – Reading Chronicle. “Angry neighbours in Pangbourne are devastated at West Berkshire Council’s proposals to cut the library’s opening hours by 40% starting next year – a move campaigners say effectively sounds the death knell for the popular service.” … “The Facebook group Save Pangbourne Library, which was set up last Tuesday, had already attracted nearly 200 likes when the Chronicle went to press.”