by the time my partner returned with the bad news that the sos save our 6 libraries had lost its legal campaign tochallenge the basis of the public consultation prior to the closure of 6 libraries.
this is a major setback although not neccessarilly a defeat.if we have lost the battle we have not lost the war,although it is very dispiriting.
the campaign will now have to redouble its efforts.there are 3 outstanding public events at which to raise money and the issues.at kensal rise library,there were so mnay users of the library,that the security/carpenters employed to board up and close the library permanently would not cross the picket line.as i write,that library remains notionally open,and users continue to run some library services from the street.several other libraries cannot be boarded up because other services,such as a childrens centre remain unaffected.others are owned or leased by other institutions which limit the councils choices.the council employed a security guard to sleep outside our local library on wednesday night and boarde3d it up at the 1st opportunity.
this suggests that there are already some dity tricks and underhnd tactics going on,and none of this is coming from the campaign.it appears that the council knew about the court decision before they should have done so.the high handed atrtitude to staff has left many seriously distressed not simply about their own redundancies but also about their relationships with library users.it is clear that staff are likely to have had personal property locked in libraries niow permamently closed.theer appear to be no arrangements for library users to return what is on loan to them.as soon as the councils responsibility to do nothing that affected libraries permanently,they have acted at breakneck speed and with a high handed manner that gloats at the outcome.
it seesm the judge who made the decision about dale farm travelllers-negatively,has just repeated the excercise of injustice in relation to the libraries.this suggests that the campaign make the link,as well as increasing contact with the trades unions,and with institutions and individuals associated with ownership/leas3e of buildings.
we need to step up targetting the other public appearances of the councillors and their party sections behind thus cut.the council have grandiose plans for a new centralised library,a new council centre and for the development of the library buildings.given the militancy amongst construction workers/unions,this suggests a further link to restrict the abiklity of this council to simpkly rip off communities and carry on.
some,too many seem to completely disregard the very real losses involved in these changes.libraries are not an optional add on in communities.in this arrea it is the only non-commercial community resource.until yesterday there were regular,probably hourly visits by childrenb from the nearest infant/orimary/junior school to the library.staff will have been made redundant or moved on,without any "closure"of relationships,let alone loss of employment.this leaves a very real hole in our community,which will be repeated oen way or another across 5 other communities.given this is a test case,it does not bode well for many other communities across britain.
that said,this is a lost battle,not a lost war.the campaign continues