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Sunday, 8 March 2020

Agreement on Brent Libraries

It is always nice to find areas of agreement, and so I would like to say that I agree with both Paul Lorber and Martin Francis that the reference in a Brent poster to ten libraries is misleading.  Brent runs six libraries serving far more people in more ways than it did with twelve in 2011.

There are six publicly run libraries in Brent.  These are the two new ones Wembley and Willesden, one completely refurbished one at Kilburn, one partially refurbished one at Ealing Road and towo others in Harlesden and Kingsbury.  They are open to all residents, pupils and workers in Brent free of charge for all kinds of library services and subject to various statutory guarantees.  They are staffed by paid staff on the Council payroll with the various worker rights that guarantees.

Not so the four "community" libraries which each private organisations that do not publish things like visitor or loan numbers, and do not give the kind of access guarantees that Brent's seven day libraries have.  I would be surprised if they access the range of services either since that would be extremely expensive.  In the past, it appeared that one of them seemed to be more a bookshop than a library

Sadly, I do have to point out that Paul Lorber is doing a bit of misleading of his own in implying that Brent could have just handed over buildings to volunteer groups. That is simply not so.

I think it is also worth pointing out that Brent is one of a dwindling group of authorities that still provide a museum and archive service (at Willesden Green), and that Philip Grant's point about having an exhibition.  There has been at least one previous exhibition on Ernest Trobridge, at the Willesden Museum back in 2010

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