National news

  • Cultural and creative enrichment: how libraries deliver – Libraries Taskforce / Kathy Settle. “Libraries are well-placed to increase participation in cultural activities because of their use by all social groups and their role as inclusive cultural hubs within communities. Libraries also point people to wider cultural activities, objects, knowledge and sites, and encourage individuals to explore different cultural experiences and to create things themselves. Below is the icon we have created to symbolise this outcome. To make it easier to spot related content, you’ll start to see this on material produced by the Libraries Taskforce that relates to work being done that supports this outcome. It’s freely available to download from this folder if others want to use it.”.  Includes look at St Helens, Shakespeare and Fun Palaces.
  • Encryption, library catalogues, and security testing – Libraries Hacked. “It’s important to assess the requirement for encryption not just in the context of risk to the data for that service. Many recent hacks against individuals have been a result of credentials leaked from insecure accounts, then used to gain access to more secure services. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg had his Twitter and Pinterest accounts hacked as a result of  leaked LinkedIn credentials. Twitter CEO Jack Dorney and Google CEO Sundar Pichai have had similar experiences. If a service requires login, the likelihood is those credentials will be securing all sorts of other data. Protecting them is essential.”.  Lists all UK library service and rates their catalogue security.

International news

  • Kyrgyzstan – Libraries opening the world for Kyrgyz youth – World Bulletin. “The libraries of Kyrgyzstan are a success story. With a population of just under a million people, the capital city of the Central Asian country contains a total number of  22 libraries of which the second largest library is the Kasimalı Bayalinov Children and Youth Library. The library, which was opened in 1962, was first  named after the famous Russian philosopher Nikolai Chernishevskiy however was renamed in 1993 after the famous Kyrgyz writer of childrens books, Kasimali Bayalinov, as a mark of respect for the declaration of independence from the former Soviet Union.”
  • USA – Broad Foundation donates $1 million to LA public libraries – LA School Report. “The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation announced Tuesday that it has donated $1 million to the city’s public libraries to fund technology purchases for the libraries’ after-school homework centers used by thousands of the city’s children and teens.”

Local news by authority

“Books could be ordered online and collected from community centres in the latest ill-thought-out suggestion for replacing libraries — this time in Coventry. he Arena Park library closed down last month after it was revealed that Coventry city council was paying a retail-level commercial rate for its location in a shopping centre.  An annual outlay of a whopping £218,000 covered rent, service charges and business rates.  The ten-year lease came to an end in August and, not surprisingly, wasn’t renewed. Meanwhile five other branch libraries in Coventry are threatened with closure and the city council hopes to run a further five in partnership with other community groups, possibly relocating to these groups’ premises, in an effort to shave £3.8m from the libraries and youth services budget.  This would leave just a handful of core, council-led, professionally-run libraries, and even these would have a reduced budget and “opportunities for volunteering”, according to a consultation announcement about the plans. Asked about the cuts by the Coventry Telegraph, Kevin Maton, the council’s cabinet member for libraries, said there was a proposal that in future readers could simply order online and books would be kept in storage rather than on library shelves.  It’s a proposal that entirely misses many of the reasons libraries are valuable — including, er, providing internet access for those without it.” Coventry – Library News – Private Eye (not available online).

  • Cumbria – Keeping libraries relevant and enhancing community wellbeing – Public Sector Executive. “Cllr Ian Stewart, cabinet member for Public Health and Community Services at Cumbria County Council, in his Libraries Taskforce blog, explains why we all must step up and meet the challenge of ensuring libraries are relevant to this day and age” … “we have library services that are open and outward facing, not inward or “reverential”.  The skills of engagement with people which are core to many library functions are needed by the whole council in these times of change. The listening skills of library staff, allied to a deep knowledge of their community can also be harnessed and utilised to make that community a better place for all.”
  • Lancashire – Anger as it’s confirmed LCC to close three Hyndburn libraries – Accrington Observer. Teacher says “We are absolutely devastated at the announcements to date as we feel a strong viable solution has been proposed by ourselves which would benefit all residents of Rishton. We would very much welcome the opportunity to discuss our proposal further with LCC. If we lose this our village will be decimated.””
  • Lancashire – Final chapter as library faces the axe – Clitheroe Advertiser. “Disappointed campaigners, who submitted petitions and battled for months to keep the crucial services open, are refusing to back down and have vowed to continue fighting. Mr Neil Martin, a spokesman for the Save Whalley Library campaign, said: “This is very disappointing news, and a great blow to the community, along with the other cuts the residents of the Ribble Valley have experienced such as bus services. “
  • Lancashire – Lancashire council to close more than 20 libraries – Guardian. “Lancashire author Andrew Michael Hurley, the Costa award-winning novelist, has warned that “once libraries are closed down that’s it, they don’t come back”, after Lancashire county council confirmed it was set to go ahead with plans to close more than 20 local libraries. The council proposed reducing its library network from 73 to 44 branches in May, in response to government cuts to its budget. After a consultation to which it received more than 7,000 responses, it recommended in a report on Friday that while a few libraries were facing a reprieve, more than 20 others would still be closed. The report goes to the council’s cabinet on 8 September.”
  • Lancashire – Last-ditch bid to save libraries – Blackpool Gazette. “Angry MP Mark Menzies is pressing for central Government intervention after Lancashire County Council earmarked Lytham, Ansdell, Freckleton and Kirkham libraries for closure in their current form.” … “These include the Friends of Ansdell Library, who have ‘reluctantly’ submitted a business case for a community library in the event that they lose their fight to keep the village library open, and a cartel of parish and town councils in rural Fylde, who are keen to run a range of services from the Kirkham library building.”
  • Lancashire – MP says time to let local councils hold the budget strings – Lancashire Evening Post. “Tory MP Nigel Evans has hit back at new county council (LCC) cuts by calling for funding to be taken from county councils and given to local borough councils instead.”
  • Lancashire – Three libraries in Pendle set to close – Pendle Today. “Although there has been criticism from the Conservatives that the cuts have been politically motivated, the Labour administration at County Hall has defended its actions in the circumstances and said that even though some buildings will close, services will continue to be run from elsewhere.”
  • Lancashire – Two libraries and a children’s centre could be closed down – Wigan Today.
  • South Gloucestershire – Council backtracks on plans to close South Gloucestershire libraries after thousands sign petitions – Bristol Post. “It came up with a plan in January to save £650,000 from its libraries, which cost £2.8million to run last year alone. The plan included cutting services, using volunteers to staff libraries, and closing branches around South Gloucestershire except for five. Council agreed to keep the main libraries open with the others turned into satellite libraries. There are 14 in the area, including the mobile library.” … “That plan was met with derision…” … Open+ and volunteers seen as alternative instead. Staff reduced.
  • South Gloucestershire – Library Review – South Gloucestershire Council. “The savings target has been reduced from £650,000 to £500,000 (within a budget of £2.6 million); Staffed opening hours will reflect usage and be more consistent across South Gloucestershire; The service will introduce a technology (commonly known as Open Plus) to enable libraries to open without staff, extending opening times by up to 100% on current hours; The mobile library service will be replaced with community centre based libraries; South Gloucestershire  Council  will fund the building costs of Chipping Sodbury Library with the service being delivered by volunteers”
  • Wakefield – Library shuts after asbestos uncovered – Brief Report. “Wakefield Council planned to shut Ossett library on September 10 for nine weeks whilst refurbishment work took place.  But it has now brought forward the closure over safety concerns. It said the health and wellbeing of staff and visitors was a “priority” and it closed the building yesterday as “a precautionary measure”. Work to upgrade the library will now take longer than planned and it is expected to be shut until Spring.”
  • Warrington – Meetings set to discuss future of town’s libraries – Warrington Guardian. “LiveWire, which runs the libraries in the town, is hosting the events throughout September. Earlier this years hours were cut at libraries across Warrington as bosses said usage had fallen. Plans have already been announced to move Warrington Central Library into a base in the Golden Square Shopping Centre. Sessions start on Monday at 6pm in Stockton Heath Library.”