Saturday, 29 January 2011

Voices for Libraries : Save our Libraries Day, 5 February 2011

I`ll return to the story of my great-grandfather and his role in the setting up of the first free library in Long Eaton at a later date.

In the meantime, many people will be aware that 5 February is Save our Libraries Day. Various plans have been made for the day in different areas, some more practical than others.

I`m guessing most people are like me and tend to always plan a few weeks ahead, so may not now have much spare time available. That need not be a problem. If you Google the phrase `save our libraries 5 february` you will easily find an entry from CILIP (the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals), suggesting ways to show support even if you have only a couple of minutes to spare.

As a suggestion of my own, one possibility you may be able to pursue is to reserve a book or books online and just drop into the library to collect it on the day. That shouldn`t eat into your day too much.

In my experience of these things, there`s always someone who starts wanting to change plans or introduce new ones, with little thought to the practicalities, usually with very little time to go. As Senegalese historian/author Cheikh Anta Diop once wisely commented "there is always someone trying to drown a fish" ! There`s really no need to make complications, just do what you can and don`t make a rod for your own back, that`s my advice.

Lastly, if you want to read more on the subject, you might like to see my articles `Voices for Libraries` (29 Sep 2010) , `Voices for Libraries #2` (9 Dec 2010) and/or `Voices for Libraries #3 : 5 February is Save our Libraries Day` (25 January 2011), all of which appear at

Of course, better men than me have addressed this subject ! One piece that seems to have been unjustly overlooked is Ian Clark`s `Libraries : The Foundation for a Democratic Society` (22 Sep 2010), which can be found at . If you only read one article on this issue, make it this one !

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