YP Letters: Folly to shelve one of our greatest assets '“ public libraries

From: Mr H.O. Griffiths, Littledale, Pickering.

The future of libraries is at risk.

RE your report “Libraries faced with greatest crisis in history” (The Yorkshire Post, March 29). And so it came to pass that the Tories (in their curious and self-centred “wisdom”) first in coalition, and since then with their arrogant and presumptive interpretation of a marginal majority, have continued to fail us all with their attitude to and annihilation of our precious public library system.

This annihilation of public access to books and knowledge does not of course include an equal lack of access to all things cultural for the Tories via their contacts inside the privileged economic and intellectual “powerhouse “ that is the top one per cent.

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It does mean that millions of ordinary “hard-working”, low-income people have had (and will have) their opportunity to use public library services (and the experience and knowledge of irreplaceable public library staff) denied to them and future generations.

The facts speak for themselves. Since 2010, nearly 350 libraries have been closed (more in Yorkshire than anywhere else) and 8,000 jobs lost.

Looking ahead, another 111 libraries are set for closure this year alone, and all because of obsessive and ill thought-out austerity measures brought about by a regressive and ideological attitude to economic need versus economic greed by David Cameron, George Osborne and their fawning acolytes.

History will look back at these times with a mixture of disbelief, anger and opprobrium when Cameron’s and Osborne’s legacy is finally put to the ultimate test. Meanwhile what price wisdom? What price knowledge? What price insight? What price morality? What price greed?

From: John Appleyard, Firthcliffe Parade, Liversedge.

WE should all be concerned about the reductions of libraries in this country, so I welcome The Yorkshire Post report on libraries faced with ‘greatest cuts in history’. The closures of libraries hits the less well off in particular, those that can’t afford to pay £20-25 for a book have a good chance to borrow one.

Libraries are not just about books. Unemployed people with no home computer can search for jobs, children without access to a computer at home, can do their homework online.

Closures are bad enough but those staying open are facing a reduction in opening hours and less staff. These actions can only bring about more inequality in our lives.