What I read whilst on holiday

The tragedy of my life Norman Dewers – gigolo and assistant librarian

– from Table Manners (1973) the first play in the Norman Conquests series by Alan Ayckbourn. The main character Norman is the finest exponent of librarianship ever recorded.

Proof that library closures cause riots – Isobelle Carmody stops them

Throughout the night riot police played “cat and mouse” with the gangs who smashed their way into supermarkets and shops, including many upmarket retailers, in the heart of Manchester city centre. The widespread attacks followed similar disturbances in neighbouring Salford, in which a former library was set on fire and shops attacked in the central precinct.Daily Telegraph (UK)

If proof were needed that the closure of public libraries directly leads to wanton criminality, muggings, arson, looting by the young here is THE prime example. If that UK library had been open, would there have been riotous looting – I think not. Those young people would have been nestled in the YA section of the library reading one of the Obernewtyn books by Isobelle Carmody, or maybe researching butterflies on the Internet for their homework assignments, or maybe just relaxing with friends and discussing the library’s new graphic novels. The government and local councillors who have closed UK libraries, should be held responsible and accountable for turning the young to crime, when all they ever wanted was information access.

The state has turned the young from Hoban to Hoodies, from Turgenev to trainers and from Rand to rioting.  Let these riots be a lesson that when a library closes, so do minds. Not a single UK library must be allowed to close in the current economic climate. When austerity and unemployment are prevalent, closing down the only free (at point of access) institution where people may improve themselves is a far far worse crime than stealing shoes.

See also http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/books/features/boyd-tonkin-not-one-more-library-must-close-2335952.html