Celebrities who support public libraries


Please be polite if asking for support from celebrities. They are people like everyone else and have busy lives.  For an example of what can go wrong, here is an Daily Telegraph article on what happened  when Jamie Oliver was badgered for a donation to save his local library.  And that was by Dame Joan Bakewell.


NB.  Critics accuse authors of being self-interested in supporting libraries, presumably in the same way that doctors are about hospitals or soldiers are about bullet-proof vests.  A brilliant defence of why authors should be allowed to campaign for libraries is here.
Malorie Blackman – Ex children’s laureate.
Eric Chappell – writer of Rising Damp.
John Connelly 
Julia Donaldson Children’s laureate, author of “The Gruffalo” and others.
Margaret Drabble
Anne FineChildren’s writer.
Neil Gaiman – a very keen pro-library campaigner, active in USA as well.
Maggie Gee.
Alan Gibbons – Children’s writer and creator of the Campaign for the Book, the biggest library campaigner of all. 
Debi Gliori – at Moray.
Christopher Gray
Mark Haddon.  Author of “The curious incident of the dog in the night time”, especially concerned about adult literacy.  Campaigned against library closures in Oxfordshire.
Lee Hall – The writer of Billy Elliott was vocal in his attack on Labour planning to close libraries in Newcastle.  See his speech of 9th January 2012.
Tony Hawks.  “Libraries are something I am very positive about. I was recently asked what made me proud to be British and I said it was our libraries. Free public libraries and free museums are some of the things we have been world leaders in and other countries have followed us.”
Val McDermid
Ken McLeod  
Deborah Moggach – patron of Keats Community Library. 
Michael Moore – USA. Donated half royalties of latest book to public libraries.
Michael Morpurgo – Author of “War Horse” and many other children’s/young people’s novels – “To close a library is a crime”.
David Nicholls signed petition to save Friern Barnet Library.
Ben Okri – Spoke out against library cuts.
John O’Farrell

The sadly now departed Sir Terry Pratchett on Libraries
Chris Riddell
Michael Rosen.  Author of “We’re going on a Bear Hunt” and other children’s books.  Supporter of link between schools and libraries, especially giving all schoolchildren a library card.
Zadie Smith. – see this article.
Charles Stross.Science Fiction author.
Joanna Trollope – ‘UK cannot afford to close one single public library'” plus also opened a library.
Minette Walters 
Alex Wheatle
Jacqueline Wilson
Jeanette Winterson.  She gets seriously passionate about libraries, which is how it should be.
Jean Alexander – The actress who played Hilda Ogden. “Jean Alexander is a former library assistant herself and devotes a chapter of her autobiography to her experiences in various Liverpool branch libraries”
Minnie Driver
Lord Julian Fellowes – Actor, creator of Downton Abbey.
Joanne Lumley “I support schemes sending new books to create libraries in schools in Africa, and here we are in our rich and cultured nation closing them down.”
Mark Rylance 
Prunella Scales signed petition to save Friern Barnet library.
Samantha Siddall – from Shameless.



Jamie Reid. 


Kate Adie

Tim CoatesEx of Waterstones,
James DauntMD of Waterstones, founder of Daunt’s books.
Penguin Books 



Russell Brand – Delivered the Reading Agency lecture on the book.

Michael Eavisfounder of the Glastonbury Festival 
Erick Knowles – From Antiques Roadshow (spoke at launch of Bucks volunteer-run library).

Maureen Lipman.

Chris Packham – Called cuts to his local library “insensitive, short-sighted and short-termist lunacy”

Michael Palin

Denis Robertson – Agony aunt, against cuts in Sutherland libraries.

Gaby Roslin.
Jonathon Ross – “A local library is particularly vital for children, people without cars and as part of a vibrant community”.  Involved in reopening of his local Hampstead Garden Suburb Community Library.
Hardeep Singh Koli.  “”libraries are the heartbeats of communities” 
Jamie Oliverbut note this article.   



Caitlin Moran – Times
Boyd Tonkin – Independent


Chris Addison
David Baddiel – Patron of Keats Community Library (volunteer-run)
Frankie Boyle 
Robin Ince
Miles Jupp“Archie” from Balamory.   
Phil Jupitus
Josie Long
Sue Perkins
Alexei Sayle 
Frank Skinner This one is unusual as he started off criticising libraries, was invited to see one for himself, and has now become a fan.
Mark Steel



Akala – Facebook posted in support of the opening of Marcus Garvey Library.


Guy Garvey from Elbow – helped save his local library from closure and involved in Radio Six week celebrating libraries

Dolly Parton

Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones.  ““It was the only place where I would willingly obey the laws, like silence. It was somewhere I could find out about things I was interested in.”. The Keith Richards Blues Collection at the Archive of Contemporary Music in New York; has him on the Board of Advisers.
Manic Street Preachers – “Libraries Gave Us Power”, enough said.
Tom Hingley, Inspiral Carpets.


John WoodHas opened 12,000 libraries in developing countries. 



Carol Ann Duffy – poet laureate
Matt Harveyhost of BBC Radio 4’s Wondermentalist


The provider of quotes on this page have showed their support.

No longer with us

Colin Dexter“As an older person who has seen libraries through the years, the events of this year are deeply depressing. What has worried me most about the calls for a ‘big society’ solution to the library problem in the past 12 months is the idea that you can cut library services and employ amateurs instead. Librarians have taken years to train up and can tell you what you should and shouldn’t read. Some of the processes are very complicated indeed.”

Oliver Sacks – Neurologist and writer.  Writing in support of Brent libraries.

  • #1 written by Gill Mitchell
    about 11 years ago

    After Mr Deary’s outrageous comments about libraries, Alan Gibbons has issued a challenge to him to take part in a public debate about the subject. In an email to one of my fellow school librarians, Mr D states that he has no time to do so as he is booked up for the next two years! Methinks Mr D is chickening out! If Mr Deary is so committed to his opinion about libraries I would have thought he would be only too happy to convert Alan Gibbons to his way of thinking – or is it that Mr D thinks that Alan would win the debate?

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