Libraries Need Librarians

I kicked off this month with a healthy dose of hypocrisy.

February 5th was Save our Libraries day, a grassroots movement where people across the UK gathered in their libraries to protest a wave of imminent closures due to local authority spending cuts. I got incredibly excited about all this, following the action via Twitter, the Bookseller’sFacebook page and the Guardian’s handy protest map. I read Philip Pullman’s lump-inducing call to arms against Oxfordshire’s plans to abandon their libraries to volunteers. I cheered the reliably brilliant Michael Rosen as he explainedthe link between children, schools and libraries to the BBC.

But did I visit one? Um, no. One factor was certainly social media’s insidious ability to make me feel like I am participating without moving from my laptop. The other was a shameful knowledge that nowadays I prefer libraries in theory rather than practice.

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