October 9th, marked the first day of Libraries Week. Labour shadow culture minister, Kevin Brennan, MP, tells us why he hopes as many people as possible will take the time to visit a library, borrow a book, or tweet and tell their friends about the services libraries offer.
Supporting and promoting our local libraries is crucial at a time when the Government is failing to appreciate their value and importance. Public libraries have been badly hit by policies of austerity. Since 2010, 478 libraries have closed across the UK. Last year, library visits fell by 5.5% and total library expenditure was reduced by £25 million. And yet, in the face of these figures, this Government is still refusing to put an end to the Local Authority cuts that are pressuring Councils into cutting important services.
In an article for The Bookseller, Kevin tells us why libraries are still important and how Labour understands the value of libraries and the challenges they currently face under this Conservative government.