A big thank you to all volunteer library staff 

Sheffield central library
Sheffield central library
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Monica Dyson

Monica Makes Sense!, S6

For some strange reason, best known only to themselves,  there is a spate of 'library bashing'  in letters from a couple of individuals.

We all know what has happened to libraries and as library users we have been horrified at any attempt to close our local libraries or indeed lose our iconic Central Library to any use other than what it was originally intended for.

Happily libraries are surviving and it is only down to the stalwart work put in by its hard working volunteers.

I started using a library when I was a very young child. My sister and I were taken down to Firth Park Library every Saturday by our father, choose books and together with my mother, sit happily in the evening reading our books. 

I never thought that when I grew up I would actually work at that library as a Library Assistant.

I think that, at the age I am, I can be called somewhat of an expert in the standard of libraries today.

My local library, Stannington Library, seems to have born the brunt of much of the malicious tirades from someone who appears to hold a grudge of some sort.

I have been using this library for the past twenty four years and I can honestly say that I have never once noticed any fall in the standards of this lovely little place,

It is warm and welcoming and its staff are helpful, knowledgeable and patient given the number of books I order, and which incidentally arrive most speedily. It is a very important part of the local community and involves local schools, churches and other organisations in its many events. In a time when many people suffer the scourge of loneliness, it offers a chance for them to make friends and have a social life.

We all know that there are no longer paid members of staff in libraries like Stannington Library. This is not going to change, but while we have the dedication and commitment of people who care what happens in their local community, we have an alternative, and not one that is sub standard in any way.

In an age when reading has taken a bit of a knock with many children more interested in electronic gadgets than the wealth of literature around, keeping libraries open has never been more important than it is today.

A big thank you to all the volunteer library staff in every district of Sheffield!