It seems that Lee Peace is wanting to stir up controversy in his article about libraries in the Monday Star.
As one of our users said ‘He should come and see us at Greenhill’.
So I would like to invite him to do just that.
It is true that book loans have decreased across the nation over the last 20 years, so it is not surprising that this has been the experience of Greenhill Library too.
However, the rate of decline has reduced very considerably since 2014 and especially since we have substantially re-invigorated our stock by putting our donated books into circulation.
However, as a volunteer library we have recently adopted a strapline, ‘More than just books’. With a good number of volunteers we have been able to restart or introduce many new ventures over the last four years.
The Star article on Woodseats library, (July 10, 2018), described several of the things they are doing as innovative.
We’ve been doing them for years.
Class visits from the local schools and uniformed organisations doing the Reading badge.
More children than ever are doing the Summer Reading Challenge.
Chatterbooks is now weekly instead of monthly and we have twice as many children.
This is also true for Funtime and Storytime.
We have started a coffee morning and 40 people were there last Friday.
There is now a craft club and a Code club is starting in September.
In addition there are many events which the wider community really appreciate, The farmers market three times a year, regular talks, film nights, films for children and a community group.
All these lead to a steady trickle of new people signing up for a library card.
As a result of all this there is a greater sense of community in Greenhill.
As one user said: “The library has put the heart back into Greenhill.’’
Our footfall is more than it was in 2011, when the library was run by council staff.
We’re not criticising them, it’s just we have more volunteers available.
Some people might say that’s fine in an area like Greenhill. But nearby Jordanthorpe library is also prospering.
Chair of Trustees, Greenhill Community Library