Farewell to the Bookworm

Sadly following a period of illness Andrew Chetley, a much loved Friend of Westbourne Library, died on 17th October 2012. Since that time Bookworm has fallen silent and in respect to Andrew this remains the case. More recently news of the library and the Broomhill area has come through the Broomhill Journal. A copy of the latest addition has been reproduced here by permission of the editor, all photos of library events remain the copyright of the Friends of Westbourne Library.

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The Broomhill News blog site has arrived

Click here to read the latest news on BROOMHILL NEWS BLOG http://broomhillnews.wordpress.com

The friends of Westbourne news letter. Issue 2

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Welcome to the first issue of Bookworm – the newsletter of the Friends of Westbourne Library. Every three months, we’ll produce a regular update about efforts to keep open Suffolk’s liveliest library!

What others are saying …

If you haven’t seen it yet, have a look at We Love Libraries http://www.welovelibraries.co.uk/ and listen to what people in Somerset are saying about how important libraries are to them. If you are looking for a comment or two to add to the consultation document, there is plenty of strong argument that we can also use in Suffolk!

UNISON has produced a useful fact sheet which also outlines the importance of libraries: http://www.unison.org.uk/million/resources/MV_Factsheet10.pdf

And, if you haven’t heard or read it yet, have a look at what best-selling author Philip Pullman says about the threatened cuts to public libraries: http://falseeconomy.org.uk/blog/save-oxfordshire-libraries-speech-philip-pullman His conclusion: “Leave the libraries alone. You don’t know the value of what you’re looking after. It is too precious to destroy.”
Suffolk County Council’s decision to offload responsibility for 29 of its 44 libraries has left the future of Westbourne Library in serious jeopardy.

More than 120 local people came to a public meeting on 11 Feb to show support for the library. That meeting agreed to form a Friends of Westbourne Library group. The group has drawn heavily on support from the Broomhill Pool Trust members—local people who care about the Broomhill and North Ipswich area. Trust officer, Garath Jones, has been elected as Chairman of the new Friends group.

We have two immediate plans:
Campaign to ensure that Suffolk County Council continues to support this library, ideally as a “County” library
Develop a workable business plan to ensure that if the decision to close is taken, we can keep this library open for everyone in the community.

The library remains incredibly popular with visitor numbers of some 77,000 a year. So we aim to lobby SCC to seek a reclassification of Westbourne to “County” status. Critically, Central Suffolk & North Ipswich will be the only constituency in Suffolk without a retained county library!

The Trust has also helped prepare a business plan and budget proposal to save the facility.
Keep in touch by emailing the Frends with your comments, news and suggestions: info@friendsofwestbournelibrary.co.uk - and check the website for news updates: www.friends of westbournelibrary.co.uk