National news

  • First look inside Scottish Poetry Library after £380k revamp – STV. ““The name we gave to the renovation was ‘space for sound’ because we wanted to have space for books and to add to our book collection but we also wanted to have space so that people could listen to poetry and also make noise as well,” Colin said. “In libraries now, you can’t just have books. It is about computers and technology. “It is also about performance and being able to listen to poetry as well as being able to read it.”
  • Focus on the children’s market – Nielsen Library Bulletin. “As loans in the Children’s category increase, it’s worth looking at which  individual areas of the Children’s market have prompted the increase. The largest two categories, Children’s Fiction and Picture books, have grown by 0.6% and 2.4% respectively year-on-year. Meanwhile Children’s General Non-Fiction loans have increased by 18.6% to 138.5k when compared to the equivalent period of 2014″
  • I Am a Mobile Librarian – BFI. “Little Hormead, Buntingford, Furneaux Pelham – just three of the villages visited by the mobile library on its fortnightly tour of East Hertfordshire. The film was commissioned by the Foreign Office, presumably, to present British society as efficient, educated and caring to audiences overseas. Librarian Sally Jenkins clearly derives much pleasure from her work, which she also regards as a hobby.” [This film included here to mark the ending of the mobile library service in Hertfordshire from 31st October – Ed.]
  • I doubt even the House of Lords could save my local library now – Guardian / Lucy Mangan. “Of course it had to happen. Plans are afoot to turn four of my local libraries – including Torridon Road, the one whose shelves I stripped over the course of countless Saturdays during my pathologically antisocial and extremely happy childhood – into (partly) community-run entities in order to save £1m. It’s part of the £45m of savings that Lewisham – the country’s 17th most deprived borough – has to find from somewhere as a result of the government’s continuing commitment to taking from the poor to give to the rich.”

“The council and libraries’ representatives – the poor bloody infantry, not the enemy – did their best to reassure people that the impact of the changes would be minimised, but the hard fact is that once you start taking away trained staff, once you start relying on volunteers to look after things and renting space in the building to other companies (no matter how “complementary” they are to the setting at first), it is the beginning of the end.”

  • Intellectual Freedom – CILIP.  Recently updated pages. includes details on: – censorship – freedom of information – freedom of access to the internet – respecting privacy – children and young people – the role of CILIP and our members – links to further resources.  See also Why we launched the Amnesty CILIP Honour – CILIP. “On 23 October CILIP and Amnesty International UK announced a major new partnership. The two organisations will supplement the long-standing Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals with a new commendation: the Amnesty CILIP Honour. We believe this is a milestone in recognising the power of books to help children shape a better world. In essence, Amnesty’s judging panel will award the honour to one book from each of the Carnegie and Kate Greenaway shortlists. The books we commend will be those that we believe most distinctively illuminate, communicate or celebrate human rights – which in essence are freedom, truth, justice and fairness, detailed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child. We at Amnesty are extremely proud to be partnering with CILIP. We know the vital role that librarians play in creating a well-informed, balanced and responsible society and we want to celebrate the books on their Kate Greenaway and Carnegie shortlists.”
  • TipsSave Lincolnshire Libraries. Analysis of the campaign to keep council funding for Lincolnshire libraries, looking at key learning points and giving hints and tips, with examples, of how to campaign successfully. “. Councils like to make up new words to make cuts sound acceptable, an improvement even, use clear and precise language to counter this. It’s important to get your words and definitions fixed from day one and control how these words are used if you can. And, if your council says there are no plans to close libraries, find out exactly what they mean by this”
  • #uklibchat agenda – Tues 1 Nov 2015: A C21st Professional Association – UKLibChat.  Webchat will include CILIP CEO Nick Poole.

International news

  • Canada – The rewarding path of being a librarian – Gazette. “Maryland Ghost Trackers revealed evidence Tuesday from a recent five-hour investigation in which they said several spirits were recorded at the Glen Burnie Regional Library. “I’m amazed,” librarian Brian Oberle said at the branch’s annual Ghost Hunters event. “After our reveal there was a lot more on our recordings than I had thought at the time. I’m less skeptical.””
  • Denmark – Daniel Mayer designs library 2.0 in the center of Copenhagen, Denmark – Design Boom. “library 2.0′ is the master thesis project of daniel mayer at the technical university of vienna. based on a competition from AWR, the concept centers itself around discovering ways to incorporate modern technologies into a library setting in order to ease the change from print to digital medias.” … “serving as a hub of communication, the program enables person-to-person exposure through a dominantly open organization platform. a large void, and flexible space around it, acts as a connector through which visitors can access: reading spaces, seminar rooms, lecture and research areas, multi-functional activity rooms, exhibition zone, daycare, games room, café, bar, and other informal areas.”
  • Eire – Reading to babies: a beginner’s guide – Irish Times. “In 2014, Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown launched an initiative called Babies Love Books to promote the importance of reading to young children. Reaching out through local health centres, it invites parents to bring their infants to any one of the eight branch libraries. The initiative aims to encourage young families to join and use their local library, and it also gives the baby a book to keep, a token and symbol of future literacy. Recent research has provided biological evidence to support empirical studies about the relationship between reading aloud to babies and brain development in the first three years of life.”
  • Japan – This Library-Themed Tokyo Hotel Is a Book-Lover’s Paradise – Conde Nast Traveller. “A hideaway for bibliophiles has just sprung up in Tokyo: A library that won’t kick readers out after hours. In fact, this library encourages you to spend the night, because it’s actually a hotel. On November 5, Book and Bed Tokyo, a bookstore-themed hotel opens, allowing guests to sleep in true Japanese-style compartments built into the bookshelves that house more than 1,700 English and Japanese books. Located in a high-rise in Tokyo’s Ikebukuro neighborhood, the hotel can host 12 guests amongst its bookshelves in compartments ranging from $32 to $50 depending on the size, according to RocketNews24. Outside of the common reading area, outfitted in comfy couches, there is room for an additional 18 guests in similar compartments. “
  • USA – Glen Burnie library resource for all – even ghosts Capital Gazette.
  • USA – Libraries transform campaign – ALA. “Designed to increase public awareness of the value, impact and services provided by libraries and library professionals, the Libraries Transform campaign will ensure there is one clear, energetic voice for our profession. Showcasing the transformative nature of today’s libraries and elevating the critical role libraries play in the digital age.”
  • USA – What Libraries Can (Still) Do – New York Review of Books. “Of the many institutions suffering through the world’s metamorphosis from analog to digital (real to virtual, offline to online), few are as beleaguered as that bedrock of our culture, the public library. Budgets are being slashed by state and local governments. Even the best libraries are cutting staff and hours. Their information desks are seemingly superseded by Google, their encyclopedias are gathering dust. And their defining product, the one that lines their shelves, now arrives in the form of a weightless doppelgänger that doesn’t require shelves. ” … “In the midst of an information explosion, librarians are still the most versatile information specialists we have. And the purest. In his new book, BiblioTech, a wise and passionate manifesto, John Palfrey reminds us that the library is the last free space for the gathering and sharing of knowledge: “Our attention cannot be bought and sold in a library.” As a tradition barely a century and a half old in the United States, it gives physical form to the principle that public access to knowledge is the foundation of democracy.”

Local news by authority

  • Camden – Council chiefs say Jimmy Savile and Rolf Harris books will be kept on library shelves – and it’s up to readers if they want to borrow them – Camden New Journal. “The Town Hall has several copies of Harris’s book Buster Fleabags – a memoir about a dog he had while growing up in Western Australia – available for loan across six branches. It is also stocking Jim’ll Fix It host Savile’s autobiography, As It Happens, at Swiss Cottage. Leisure chief Councillor Abdul Hai said it was not up to Camden to censor books that had not been banned, and the council was acting in line with other local authorities”
  • Doncaster – Doncaster’s empty spaces transformed into literacy hubs – South Yorkshire Times. “As part of a partnership campaign to boost reading and writing levels in the town, a temporarily empty shop unit in the town centre Waterdale Shopping Centre provided by St Modwen, vacant space in the Springwell Centre, Denaby, and Re-Read Askern Community Library will be turned into pop-up book shops” … “The scheme is supported by Doncaster Libraries, Doncaster Book Award and Children’s University. The pop-up shops aim to inspire a love of reading and raise awareness of the importance of literacy skills. Visitors will also be able to pick up free books provided by the pop-up shops organiser, Re-Read. “
  • Fife – Library campaigners urge locals to have their say – Fife Today. “Campaigners fighting to save four Glenrothes libraries from possible closure are urging people to have their say while they still have a chance. A public consultation allowing people from across Fife to give their opinions on Fife Cultural Trust’s proposals to close 16 library facilities, ends on November 6.” 2000 have responded so far.
  • Hillingdon – Yiewsley Library is back in Hillingdon Council hands – Get West London. “Yiewsley Library, now back in the council’s hands, is a “great opportunity”, says Councillor. Conservative-led Hillingdon Council have bought back the leasehold of the library, reversing the actions of the Labour group 40 years ago.” …”“The rental and the cost of the investment made it financially very viable, as well as opening up a tremendous potential going forwards. “Depending on what happens with the gym, which we hope we can continue for a long time, there are other opportunities for that site in time. Trenic Gym is the current tenant above the library facility, which will now pay rent to the council, instead of Legal and General, who bought a 120 year lease in 1973.”
  • Leicestershire – Mobile library plan is mooted for Barwell  – Hinckley Times. “Barwell had been progressing with a community take-over but the group had to pull out after failing to find ways to make the branch financially viable” … “The consultation is one of four in the county in places where no group has come forward with a viable business case to take over the local library, currently located in the George Ward Centre.”
  • Milton Keynes – Bletchley Library gets £529,000 investment. Should it be new base local police? – One MK. “The future of Westfield Road library in Central Bletchley is secure following a decision by Milton Keynes Council on September 14 to invest over half a million pounds in the popular library. The work to the library will see it being modernised to improve the use of the existing space and to create room for other organisations to operate from the library. One option being considered is with the proposed closure of the Bletchley Police Station could the Library offer a new base for the police service. ” … “The funding for the improvements to the library comes from the capital budget and from planning gain.”
  • Oxfordshire – Library service will be brought closer to home – Oxford Times. “Oxfordshire County Council wants to make sure more elderly and housebound people are able to borrow books by improving its home library service, used by 233 customers last year. The authority also plans to bring more council services into libraries in the county so people can get help and assistance in their community rather than having to travel to Oxford or Banbury.” … “It hopes the growth in the home library service can offset the possible closure of the county’s mobile libraries as part of budget cuts in the coming years. “
  • Sheffield – Library Stories – “In 2015 Library Stories started a citywide conversation, to discover how libraries are used and valued in Sheffield today”. Projects which collects and collates what the public think of libraries.