There’s a lot of stuff going around about Libraries shutting their doors due the cuts that the government are bringing in. I don’t like this, I don’t like that they believe that the falling number of people using libraries means that they should be shut. I personally don’t use the library in my city, it’s really bad, has rubbish opening hours and I usually can’t find anything i want. However it’s no wonder it has so much wrong with it because it doesn’t get a lot of help from the government to improve matters. It has 39 PCs and no access to the wireless, or a designated place to sit, if you want to take your laptop along to work in. The best library in Preston is the Uni library and you can only use that if you are a student (or for a year after graduating) obviously.
The government will not close this library, I’m fairly sure of that because its right in the city centre and also houses the main “museum” for the city (the museums a bit rubbish too). But i don’t think they’ll do much to improve it either, and that depresses me. I’ve seen what they’re doing to Birmingham, Manchester and Liverpool libraries and that is what I think they should do to all City libraries, including mine. They are redesigning Manchester and Liverpool libraries, and building a completely new one for Birmingham. However these libraries aren’t going to just be Libraries, they will be cultural “hubs”. They will create spaces that everyone can use, internet cafes, a place for books and places to for people to meet or work or to let your kids meet other kids.
Some people think the idea of coffee shops in libraries is a bad idea, not wanting a Starbucks to share the space of what is meant to be a government run free to use place to read or take out books. I don’t agree, I would love to have something like Birmingham’s new library in my town, it looks incredible and I think that it will ensure that there is a future for the library. So what if it’s used for other stuff than to read, as long as you can still get books and read them in peace and quiet somewhere in that huge building then that’s fine for me! I just wish that the government would improve others instead of just shutting them down!
Images of the new library can be found here