Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Forty libraries lost in 2007

From Ciar Byrne in The Independent
Margaret Hodge, the minister responsible for libraries, has conceded that a net 40 libraries have been closed in the past year. In the West Midlands, Dudley council revealed plans to shut five, prompting Ms Hodge to step in to ask how the needs of residents could be met, although she admitted there was little she could do to prevent the closures going ahead...

The novelist Will Self, who campaigned against cuts to his local library in Lambeth, south London, believes the trend for libraries to have coffee shops, DVD rentals and internet access is a diversion from their primary purpose – providing books. "Libraries are the bedrock of literate culture."

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