Nottingham City Council has announced that it will sell the building on Angel Row that currently houses our Central Library. The property will be sold to a private developer who will turn it into office space.
Our city has been home to many great writers. Many wonderful writers live here today. Nottingham was recently named a UNESCO City of Literature in recognition of our past and present contributions. Yet during the week of the city’s ‘Festival of Literature’, the council made the decision to sell the Central Library without confirming whether or not the service will be continued elsewhere in the city centre. It is as yet unclear how widely the council consulted on these plans before making a decision. This is an alarming situation.
This is not just about famous writers past and present. It’s about the people who use the Central Library today and those who will use it in the future. This is about saving a library from an uncertain future.
Our fear is that a lack of clarity about the future of our library indicates a lack of clarity on the part of the council about whether or not such a service is needed. We say that our libraries are precious institutions and that we will campaign to keep a central library open.
This petition calls on the council leadership to clearly state that a central library will be retained and that there will not be a long period of interruption to the service. Additionally, we ask for confirmation that:
• no library staff will face redundancy;
• Local History and Archival material will remain easily accessible;
• library stocks will not be diminished;
• a programme of investment and renewal will be put in place.
Most importantly, we ask that regular library users are closely consulted on any and all future plans.
Chartered Librarian at The Farnborough Academy