Shhh…

When was the last time that you borrowed a good book from the library? Me neither. In a world of free mobile internet, e-books and Amazon Prime, the death of the library is surely inexorable? However, a recent report by the Carnegie UK Trust presents a more hopeful picture. It states that 40% of people use a public library every month, and 75% say that they are important to the community. Nevertheless, 340 of over 4,000 have shut in the past 6 years (50 new ones opened), and over 60% of users are over 45 years of age. Venues for community cohesion are undeniably in need, but with scarce resources and alternative commercial uses, Local Authorities will face continued pressure to innovate the purpose of the library in the modern age, with crossovers into education and business rightly recognised by the report.