One of the dominoes falling from the current government changes means that we have a new person in charge of the DCMS (Mr Ellis’s boss), which has oversight of public libraries. A quick google search shows Jeremy Wright MP has had at least one advice surgery at Kenilworth Library, which is great, and I don’t begrudge him, when he at the time earned £190k per year, the 90p he claimed to drive from there to a local firework display at all. He was also at the opening of Southam Library. where he is on record as saying ““This is a huge achievement and this building will become, and already is, at the heart of the community for everyone – from the very youngest to the very oldest.”.  Other than that, he looks very much a normal non-rebellious Conservative MP who had become attorney-general a couple of years before. Its worthy of note, though, that Mr Wright – whose brief includes digital – does not have an active Twitter account, although he is on Facebook. If you need lessons, Jeremy, I am sure the library can help you …


National news

  • Making an impact workshops – Libraries Taskforce. “Feedback during the LOFE evaluation and from our makerspaces workshops showed us that many found demonstrating impact to be difficult and wanted guidance on how to do it. In response to this, we’re working with Darren Smart (Strategic Manager Operations for Libraries, Registration and Archives in Kent) to design a series of workshops. The aim of these is for library services to learn techniques for collecting and using impact data fo”
  • Remodelling libraries: trends and opportunities (part 1) – Designing Libraries. “Against a background of public library closures, budget and staff reductions it is easy to overlook the ways in which libraries are reinventing themselves.” …. “Despite worldwide economic difficulties, large, spectacular and aspirational libraries continue to be built.” … “A number of libraries provide services jointly to both the public and student community, the finest example of this being The Hive in Worcester, the UK’s first integrated public and university library.” … co-locations with theatres/leisure centres … “A major trend in recent library design across sectors has been the reinvention of libraries as community spaces and creative spaces.”
  • Rooftop protests not recommended – Jenn Ashworth on the power of libraries – Time To Read. “Libraries were a place to go for free and that were warm and safe” she said, saying they offered “a strange combination of safety and freedom”. The author found the time she spent skiving at the Harris Library in Preston as “a way to be part of the community”.” … “Authors can go to festivals to sell books but authors don’t go to libraries for that to the same extent. Talking to readers, in a way that libraries can facilitate, is why they write.” … “What libraries do is incredibly important and have life-changing effects. Authors are usually deeply and personally grateful to libraries and can be their biggest champions as a result.”

  • Six things you need to know about Jeremy Wright, the new culture secretary – The Stage.  “Jeremy Wright spoke of being “very excited” this morning after his appointment as secretary of state for digital, culture, media and sport. Succeeding Matt Hancock who was appointed foreign secretary yesterday, Wright hailed the DCMS “whose work has a huge impact on our heritage, the things we enjoy now and on our national future”. see also Who is Jeremy Wright? The culture secretary with an inactive Twitter account – The Drum. “Trained in law, Wright has been installed as attorney general for England and Wales since 2014. Today (9 July) marks the first time the MP for Kenilworth and Southam has been named a secretary of state, as well as the first time he has officially worked for DCMS. Political commentators have been quick to point out that Wright may find himself slightly bewildered by the ‘digital’ and ‘media’ aspects of his job, given that he hasn’t tweeted since 2015. The @JeremyWrightPPC account sprang up in April 2015 – just ahead of that year’s general election – and was used just five times as he campaigned for re-election.” see also Wikipedia. “Wright set up the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Dementia in 2007.”
  • Special #CILIPConf18 – Librarians with Lives. “This week, Librarians with Lives goes the CILIP Conference in Brighton. I chat to delegates, capture their thoughts on the conference and give listeners a sense of the overall experience. Thank you to the 40 people I managed to grab for interviews”
  • Two free guides for small businesses: Why get online, and How to get online – Libraries Taskforce. “Neil Dagger, Head of Marketing, Planning, Insight and Analysis at Nominet [Correction: I had original wrongly called Nominet a private company: it is in fact effectively a non-profit/charitable trust . My thanks to Julia Chandler of the Taskforce for the correction – Ed.], writes about the free guides they have produced, and would like to see made available in libraries across the country”

Axiell Selflib
International news

  • European Union – Erasmus+ opportunity for library cooperation: The Library Soul project Naple Sister Libraries. “The project is related to Reading Promotion and will bring together professional photography and the recommendations of the library users”
  • Global – The Atlas of New Librarianship Online David Lankes. Book now available free online. “The book that has begun conversations about librarianship and the mission of libraries around the globe is now available for free online (you can still buy the print copy) via a Creative Commons license.” … “have existed for millennia, but today the library field is searching for solid footing in an increasingly fragmented (and increasingly digital) information environment. What is librarianship when it is unmoored from cataloging, books, buildings, and committees? In The Atlas of New Librarianship, R. David Lankes offers a guide to this new landscape for practitioners. He describes a new librarianship based not on books and artifacts but on knowledge and learning; and he suggests a new mission for librarians: to improve society through facilitating knowledge creation in their communities.”
  • Global – What is the single most important element to ensure the future success of libraries? – Princh. “The poll results revealed that the vast majority of respondents believe that the most important element that will ensure the future success of libraries is the transition towards a more community-focused library.”
  • USA – Libraries are Bridging the Summer Gap for Hungry Kids – Civil Eats. “School districts across the U.S. are beginning to close their doors for summer vacation, giving students a respite from classes and exams. But for millions of young people from food-insecure households, there’s less to celebrate—because summer break puts an end to the free and reduced-price lunches they’re eligible for during the school year. Since 2011, in California, young people have found sustenance and assistance in an unlikely place: the public library …”

Local news by authority

  • Cheshire West and Chester Locality Librarian Vacancies – Cheshire West and Chester Council. Permanent, full-time £26470£30756. Supporting libraries in specific geographic parts of Cheshire West plus some general duties. [These are three of the four locality librarians in the borough: the other one is me – Ed.]
  • Herefordshire – Council leaders to explore outsourcing options for libraries, museums and archives – Ledbury Reporter. “Dozens of residents chanted ‘save our services’ outside Shire Hall ahead of a council decision to explore privatising the management of libraries, museums and archives in the county. Herefordshire Council leaders agreed to start a procurement process for the future running of the services and pledged up to £230,000 worth of investment in developing the mezzanine floor at the Hereford Library and Museum on Broad Street.” … “The outcome of the soft market testing and the report of the Heritage Lottery funded review ‘The Future Resilience of Herefordshire Council’s Museum Service’ demonstrate that a commissioned service may provide an income generation opportunity and shared costs as a way of reducing the revenue budget. “
  • Leeds – New chapter for landmark library building as keys handed over to gym operator – Business Desk. “The development company behind the transformation of a landmark Leeds library has handed over the keys to make way for a new state of the art gym and fitness centre. Leeds-based property company Rushbond has led the comprehensive programme to bring back into use the York Road Library, a grade II listed building, alongside the development of a new extension. Low-cost gym operator The Gym Group is now carrying out an internal fit-out of the 16,000 sq ft development, comprising fitness suites, weights rooms and studio space…”
  • Manchester – Manchester’s Bee in the City mini bees have landed – here’s where to find them – Manchester Evening News. “Some of the designs were unveiled today at Manchester Central Library”. Several libraries will house one.
  • North Yorkshire – Boroughbridge named county’s library of the year – North Yorkshire County Council. “Charitable trust Boroughbridge Area Community Library Association (BACLA) has run the library since December 2016 in close partnership with the County Council. The partnership has been a huge success and during the past year business levels have increased significantly. Volunteers are delivering many services to the community and are helping people to access digital and online services, such as bus pass and Blue Badge applications.” … “Boroughbridge is not the only library to be recognised by the library service. Five others have been highly commended, again for improved performance against the library service’s key indicators.” … ““More than anything, this demonstrates the hard work of the staff and more than 2,000 volunteers across the county “
  • Nottinghamshire – Notts inspires Designing Libraries. “Ruddington, Mansfield Woodhouse and Ravenshead libraries have been refurbished by Nottinghamshire’s Inspire: Culture, Learning and Libraries.” … ” “The library refurbishments are an important aspect of our mission to provide inspiring centres for reading, learning, culture and community activity for many years to come.””
  • Pembrokeshire – Neyland library to be declared surplus to requirements – Tenby Today. “The new community hub will be built at the Neyland Athletic Club site but to fund the move the current building on St Clements Road will need to be sold. Cabinet voted in favour of declaring the building surplus to requirements and suitable for sale on the open market, at its meeting on Monday, July 2.”
  • Reading – Councillors to approve cuts to Reading library hours – Get Reading. “All seven libraries in Reading will remain open, but six will face reductions in hours” … “Members of Reading Borough Council’s Policy Committee are expected to approve the changes following a public consultation which asked library users their thoughts on the scheme. A total of 1,322 people responded to the consultation, with the largest number of responses coming from readers living in Caversham. Original proposals were to cut hours across Reading Borough libraries by 37 hours, but this has now been reduced to 35.”
  • Sheffield – New Sheffield library sees visits soar by half, as usage falls elsewhere – Star. “Visits to the 12 council-run libraries, plus the home library service and archives, dropped by almost five per cent last year to 1,043,420, a Freedom of Information request by The Star has revealed. In 2013/14, user numbers for those services stood at nearly 1.6 million.” … “One library which appears to be bucking the trend is Woodseats, where visitor numbers increased by 50 per cent in the six months since it opened last September, compared with the equivalent period from 2014/15, before its closure.”
  • Somerset – Public urged to work together to save library – Mercury. “The Save Highbridge Library group has formed a committee of ‘different minded people’ after some members have voiced contrasting views on the facility’s future. Proposals include purchasing two mobile libraries, merging with the Post Office or using the building as an outreach centre….”
  • Somerset – 7,000 people respond to survey on future of Somerset libraries – County Gazette. “”The high number of responses and the efforts that people all over the county have put into the process reinforces what we already knew. Library services are just as important to you as they are to us. “
  • Waltham Forest – Waltham Forest Council announces plans for new library – Yellow Advertiser. “Waltham Forest Council has announced plans for a new library as part of the Marlowe Road developments. In plans to be debated by the council’s cabinet on July 17, the old library in Wood Street will be demolished and the site sold off to pay for the new library and revamp the Grade II listed Lea Bridge library.
  • York – York’s new community hub Designing Libraries. “The new Explore Centre in York combines library, café and hi-tech community hub, created on the site of the former Burnholme Community College.”