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Sunday, 29 January 2012

National Libraries Day looms! 4th February 2012

Save Croydon Libraries Campaign has received the following message from Voices for the Library, which we share here.
"As you are obviously aware, February 4th 2012 marks the very first National Libraries Day - an opportunity to celebrate the important contribution public libraries make to our society.  Whilst the day is about celebration, it is also about highlighting the extent to which our public library service is being destroyed by short-sighted and undemocratic policies.
In light of this, we would like to highlight and promote the protest actions that are going to be taking place up and down the country.  We have created a Facebook group to enable people to add details of any protest actions here: and people can add details of any protest action here:
 If you are not on Facebook, please email us with details of any protest actions that are taking place to that we can share them with our supporters and raise awareness of what is happening across the country.
Please pass this information on to as many people as possible. 
Best wishes and all the best for National Libraries Day,
Ian Clark
Voices for the Library"
So what is happening in Croydon?  Er, NOTHING, as far as we can ascertain. Despite a string of organisations supporting National Libraries Day, including CILIP, The Society of Chief Librarians, The Reading Agency, Campaign for the Book, Voices for the Library, the Library Campaign, National Literacy Trust...the list goes on...Croydon Council library service has not replied to enquiries from residents on the subject and we are told that library staff say they know nothing of National Libraries Day.

Authorities who really care about their library service are actively promoting this event in their libraries on council websites, via facebook and on twitter. You can view all the ways authorities are celebrating libraries on the day - some innovative, some very simple, but all showing a commitment to promoting libraries, by clicking on the interactive map here.

For example:

Portsmouth Council is holding an amnesty on late fees, advertised on their website. Details are here, reproduced below.

Sheffield Council are on board, offering a range of special events. 

Northamptonshire Council is teaming up with the a local branch of the WI to promote the event. 

Others tweet to spread the word.

But back to Croydon, Croydon Council is not doing anything to promote the day and as a campaign group we don't propose to organise anything officially.


Last year residents in Sanderstead tried to organise a walk to the library and Read -In but plans were thwarted when they met with the most remarkable amount of red tape and extremely unreasonable demands being placed on them by the local authority, should the event proceed.

But we will not be dissuaded from celebrating our much loved library service, and in so doing, showing appreciation for the staff who are working under increasingly difficult circumstances in our libraries. So, again, we suggest residents decide for themselves how they wish to mark the day. You might like to:

  • Spread the word about why we should all love our libraries. Why not tweet using  #NLD12 ‘I love my library because…’ You can follow us on twitter at @SaveSanderstead and @SaveCroydonLibs. Copy us in and we will retweet you!  There is also an active @SaveUNLibrary group for Upper Norwood
  • Join our  facebook group and add a comment if you like, or just keep up to date with the latest news.  
  • Join the library! We know many rely on family members to borrow books for others. Get your own card and show your support! A library card is the passport to a whole new world in your library and on line.  
  • Voice your support for Croydon libraries and our remaining libraries staff by email or in person.  Please CC or BCC us in at! Again we will use the text but not your email details. 
  • The simple act of entering a library affects footfall figures.  Visit your library, if only to show the staff on duty how much we value them and our libraries!
  • Send a comment, as you would wish it to appear, in support of Croydon Libraries, to Please 'sign' the comment. We will not disclose your email, just the post. We will accept posts from individuals (please including your name as you would wish it to appear e.g.
    a  library supporter
    Jamal, 5 years
    Upper Norwood Library Campaign
    or simply add your comment to this post, using the above criteria please.

Just click on Name/URL tab in the drop down, if you do not have access to other profile options.  You do not need to provide a URL for this option to work, Just enter the name you wish to appear.

Send us your own ideas.  We'll be happy to add them.

And, should you wish to write, paint, draw or photograph something to celebrate Croydon libraries please share them with us!

Image thanks to Phil Bradley -

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