Libraries are a treasured resource - Steve Cardownie

Library advisor Anna Plichta-Les pictured at the Children's Library EdinburghLibrary advisor Anna Plichta-Les pictured at the Children's Library Edinburgh
Library advisor Anna Plichta-Les pictured at the Children's Library Edinburgh
One of my remits when I served on City of Edinburgh Council was the city’s libraries. Now with 28 situated within the council’s borders they are a much-treasured resource.

All parties on the council recognise the important part libraries play in city life and usually go to great lengths to protect them from the seemingly never-ending rounds of budget cuts.

Libraries’ resources are constantly being developed to meet the requirements of modern day living and the days of just lending books are a distant memory. Local libraries now allow you to log on to over 20 websites that you would otherwise have to pay for and Library2go allows you to access hundreds of ebooks, emagazines and audio books for free.

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The website, Your Edinburgh, details local groups, clubs and societies and also provides valuable information about advice and support groups, education and learning opportunities, leisure and sports activities, local history, things to do for children and activities for the over 50s.

Against this backdrop, the council is in the throes of a consultation exercise called No Going Back which is set to close at the end of the month. This project aims to “help the library service, both school and community, to better understand what young people feel will improve their experiences when using the service”. Once completed, the service will review what has been suggested and will continue to work with young people to help make positive changes wherever possible. There is an online survey questionnaire on the website which young people aged between 11 and 18 are asked to complete – here’s hoping that many do.

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