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Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Library Buildings and Services

The Carnegie Trust has published a discussion paper on the possible future of Library services in the UK.  Lots of points are made in it, but I was struck by the table distinguishing between library services and library buildings.  This is clear in the wording of the 1964 Act, where authorities have a duty to provide a comprehensive and efficent library service, but has no duties in relation to the number or quality of buildings.  However, I think it tends to get lost in the general discussion.

My view is that that there are essential features of any good library service, most obviously a good quality online offer, that have no relation to premises.  It seems to me that much of the opposition to Brent Council's Libraries Transformation Project is based around preserving buildings irrespective of the actual services being run from them. 

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