As I write this, it’s the day before we find out what is happening with possible (or not) reopening after the third lockdown. Let us hope the vaccines mean that this is the last one we are in. This weird shut world is starting to feel disturbingly normal.

World Book Day looks interesting, as does the Future of Libraries webinar. There are some of the normal various interesting things and outright weirdness from the USA and a few initiatives from around our country, including a nice series of events from the ever-positive and busy Manchester library service.

Advert for Niche Academy from DCA

National news

  • CILIPS Annual Conference 2021 – CILIPS. “Our 2021 President, Cleo Jones, will host two days of keynotes, workshops, and talks online on June 7-8th on the theme of Reinvigorate and Renew: Emerging into a better, brighter, new world.”
  • The Future of Libraries – Aspen UK. 24 February 5pm webinar.
  • John Scally interview: ‘Libraries have to be for everyone’ – The Times. “The outgoing chief executive of the National Library of Scotland had to tear up the rule books”. Partial paywall, ironically.
  • Vintage launches Free Books Campaign partnership – BookSeller. “Vintage has launched a new partnership with the Free Books Campaign, a charity set up by education activist Sofia Akel to get books by authors of colour to those who cannot access them. Under the partnership, Vintage will donate 300 books to the Free Books Campaign annually. Twenty-five copies of 12 titles will be delivered over 2021”
  • Welsh Libraries Reaching Out Into the Virtual World – News from Wales.”“This grant of £169,950 has enabled us to appoint Kerry Pillai from Swansea Libraries as coordinator to organize, plan and deliver a range of training packages for library staff members across Wales. This will be technical training in the use of basic equipment and software apps for creating and delivering digital content, but also activities for staff to experiment and practice their skills – such as author talks, conversations between readers, reading group discussions, and illustration workshops.  The Estyn Allan project will also enable authorities to invest in basic hardware and software they need to produce good quality activities and content.””
  • World Book Day’s New Strategy Receives Major Boost From Arts Council Funding And New Partnerships, As Charity Announces First Ever Official World Book Day Song – FMCM. “The charity also announces its first ever official song by MC Grammar.” … “A partnership with Oak National Academy and the National Literacy Trust: HRH The Duchess of Cornwall will lead a day of special events for the online classroom” … “A World Book Day themed Live Lesson broadcast live on CBBC:” … “A partnership with Twitter: will help the charity reach more families directly online in lockdown. An official #WorldBookDay emoji will be launched to mark the annual celebration.” … “An extended partnership with McDonald’s: will see the food company include World Book Day’s £1 token in all its Happy Meal Boxes from 3 March to 13 April”

International news

Local news by authority

Manchester – Manchester Libraries’ celebrations for International Mother Language Day. Cllr Rahman OBE, lead member for Culture introduces.