THE local library is usually the one place you would expect to find a good book.
But it will soon be slim pickings at Danderhall, with the shelves of the library set to be stripped bare as part of a mammoth effort to see every single one of its 10,000 books taken out on loan.
The unique challenge, being held next Saturday to mark National Libraries Day, would take 284 children, 28 teenagers and 303 adults using their full entitlement – four for children and six for adults – to achieve.
If successful, the library will be left utterly devoid of books, but it is hoped a few dedicated readers will have already finished their selections by the following Monday and returned them.
The novel idea is part of efforts to get people back into the habit of using the library.
To aid the library in achieving its goal, nearby schools, community organisations and charities have been brought on board.
The library in Campview, which is normally closed on Saturdays, will be open specially for the occasion.
Chairman of Danderhall and District Community Council, Sam Campbell, said: “It is an excellent idea.
“It’s a good ambition and a very laudable one, I hope as many people as possible will take out books.”
The biggest scrum is expected to centre on the Guinness Book of Records, which is the library’s most popular publication.
Midlothian author George Korayanke, who has penned four books, said: “It certainly sounds unique. I’ve never heard of anything like it before.
“Anything that gets people into reading has got to be a good idea.”
Everyone who borrows their full entitlement of books will be given a book tombola ticket.
Events at Danderhall Library will be held from 10am to 3pm.
The full line-up includes tea, coffee and cakes from 10am to midday, with proceeds going to local charity Midlothian News and Views, which creates talking newspapers for the blind.
There will be live music followed by a book sculpture workshop and a children’s “crafternoon”.
Midlothian Council’s libraries spokesman, Councillor Peter Boyes, said: “This is a really fun way for the community in Danderhall to show how much they love their library.
“We estimate it will take 284 children, 28 teenagers and 303 adults to borrow their full entitlement to succeed in emptying the shelves.
“We’ve also arranged plenty of exciting activities to make the challenge – people can listen to live music while they browse for books.
“We’ll also have arts and crafts for the kids and a special book sculpture workshop.”
Events are taking place in all nine Midlothian libraries, with full details on the council website at www.midlothian.gov.uk/love-your-library.