Every UK public library authority now has at least a webpage or two advertising its services but how many have a webpage just for what libraries provide for children? I don’t know of any.  For such a key part of the library clientele, this seems to be a bit odd … so I hope you’re all going to impress with me with tons of great examples now: please send them in (along with any news or thoughts) to me at ianlibrarian@live.co.uk, thank you.


UK national news

  • CILIP Umbrella shortlisted for Best Association Conference – CILIP. “Our aim was to develop a conference which would attract a diverse audience from across the profession and provide a high value experience.  We are delighted at this nomination and it gives us an opportunity to thank all those who took part and contributed so much to the event, from our speakers, sponsors and delegates alike.” The 2013 Umbrella conference programme was underpinned by four core themes: future skills and future roles, information to best support society, beyond information matters and partnerships for progress. The next Umbrella conference will take place in July 2015.  See awards website.
  • Saving money by doing the right thing – LocalGov. “Locality and Vanguard have been working together to examine the issue and are able to demonstrate that big services and scale are incredibly wasteful and damaging to local communities and they restrict the ability of local authorities to respond to issues as they arise. During our research we found examples of how the development of mega-contracts led to vastly increased bureaucracy and management cost (35-55% of the whole contract value).  With such high administration costs, dramatic cuts were made to the actual delivery of services, with key community services being stopped or reduced.”
  • Written submission to the Sieghart Panel on Public Libraries – Voices for the Library. Argues for return of library standards, return of supervisory body for libraries, a solid academic review of public libraries and ring-fencing of funds for libraries.


  • 10 Distinctive American Libraries That Give Books A Good Home – Gizmodo (USA). Some beautiful libraries here by my favourite is the mobile home with the extra roof in Death Valley.  Seriously.
  • Queens Library Board votes not to suspend big-spending director Thomas Galante – NY Daily News (USA). “Galante smiled as he left the library late Thursday, his eye-popping $392,000-a-year job intact. In addition to his cushy salary, Galante renovated his office at the Queens Central Library for $140,000 — at a time when the cash-strapped system has not been able to reopen two branches damaged by Hurricane Sandy.” [Just incredible – Ed.]
  • Rise of E-Books and a Shrinking Library Catalog – Consumer Eagle (USA). “two out of five public libraries lend e-readers. But while libraries own their e-readers, the same can’t be said of the digital books on their virtual shelves. As a result, library patrons face long wait times to borrow what are essentially collections of bits and bytes.”
  • Seed library blooms at Greater Victoria libraries – Vic News (Canada). “After an orientation session, users will be able to sign out up to six varieties of locally adapted vegetables, herbs and flowers with free access to the tools and knowledge they need to grow. Users then harvest and return seeds for future library use.”

UK local news by authority

  • Ceredigion – Tregaron library stays open after council climb-down – BBC. “Ceredigion council’s cabinet had decided to close Tregaron library as part of its aim to save £9.6m this financial year. It planned to replace the six-day-a-week service with a mobile library at the town three days a week. But the local authority has now agreed to keep the library open three-days-a-week. More than 100 people who attended a public meeting in the town in January hatched a plan to keep the library based at the town’s secondary school open.”
  • Devon – Libraries across North Devon could shut under Devon County Council plans – North Devon Journal. “John Smith, head of services for communities, said the library service “cannot stand still”. He wrote: “It is subject to a wide range of external factors, the use of the service is changing with traditional use steadily declining year on year and the budget available to fund the service continuing to diminish.” “There is significant potential to remodel the service so that it leverages more community involvement and support and plays a more central role as a key component within a network of Devon Centres.”
  • Leicestershire – Calls for volunteers to run Leicestershire libraries – BBC. “Residents in Leicestershire are being asked if they would consider running 36 libraries in the county. The county council would retain responsibility for 16 of the busiest libraries but it wants volunteers to take over the rest. The move would save the authority up to £80,000 [I assume this is a typo for £800k: see this  – Ed.] a year from its £5.6m budget. Councillors said it was too early to discuss closing any of the libraries. A consultation on the plans will run until 7 July.
  • Lincolnshire – Campaigners lobby in London to save Lincolnshire libraries – Lincolnite. Pictures of the visit.
  • Lincolnshire – Library campaigners meet the Prime Minister – Bourne Local. “The group hopes Mr Cameron will intervene on plans to cut library services in Lincolnshire. Lincolnshire County Council has agreed to withdraw funding from the majority of its libraries, meaning Deepings Library in Market Deeping would close unless volunteers took it over”
  • Lincolnshire – Save Lincolnshire Libraries protesters waiting to meet more MPs over library change – Lincolnshire Echo. “The group travelled to London this morning by coach and are trying to speak to Members of Parliament in person, in a bid to save a number of libraries in the county. So far this morning, representative of North West Cambridgeshire Shailesh Vara MP and MP for Middlesbrough Tom Blenkinsop have met the protesters.” … “Gainsborough MP Sir Edward Leigh has sent his apologies, but green cards have been sent to Sir Peter Tapsell MP for Louth and Horncastle, Lincoln MP Karl McCartney and Boston and Skegness MP Mark Simmonds.”
  • Lincolnshire – Library campaigners head to Number 10 – Boston Standard. “Campaigner Melvyn Bragg said: “The public library system in this country is one of the finest achievements that we have, alongside the BBC and the British Museum. To close libraries is to close minds, especially young minds and I do hope that the opposition to these plans will persuade the county council to think again and reverse what could be an act of irreparable damage to the future of learning and the enrichment of minds.”
  • Lincolnshire – Lincolnshire libraries campaigners take their fight to David Cameron’s door – Lincolnshire Echo. “Scunthorpe MP Nic Dakin has invited all Lincolnshire MPs, those in seats on the county’s borders and local government and culture ministers and shadows to meet the protestors.” … “a small group will knock on the door of No 10 Dowing Street and hand in a letter to David Cameron and a book called The Tip of the Iceberg, containing more than 900 comments about libraries from the internet petition.”
  • Liverpool – Plans to close library up for discussion – Champion. Council says ”The way in which people access library services is also changing due to new technology, and that is why we have recently re-launched our e-library service Read Liverpool to enable people to download books, magazines and periodicals free of charge without having to visit a library.“