Public Outcry

Last Thursday, the Doncaster Free Press featured an article about the Save Doncaster Libraries campaign. As a result of this, we’ve had some wonderful emails of support from Doncaster residents, including this one from Charles Thomson. He does a fantastic job of describing the very real value of local libraries in Doncaster:

After hearing that several of our local Libraries in Doncaster will face closure under the
guise of improving the service, I felt the need to respond to these changes. As one who
fails to see the link between removing valuable local recourses such as our Libraries and an
improved services, I was wondering how many of the positive benefits the Libraries offer
to the local community will be continued once the closures go ahead. I’m talking of course
about the many communal activities the local service delivers for the young people in the
form of fun and educational learning. Not only are these places for young people to engage
and develop strong foundations for a more academic future, they give the opportunity for
social contact with others. It may not be obvious to those who want to close these doors
to the next generation but social interaction is a vital part of living in a healthy society. The
news of these closures comes hard to my ears, especially when we are constantly reminded
of the negative effects of social depravation on children who have nothing to occupy their
time. We are constantly reminded of the negative outcomes of young people with time on
their hand by the press, police and local political campaigners, who are always telling us the
importance of the need for more activities to keep young minds engaged. I have to say I’m
disappointed at the lack of response by these people, especially now their voice is needed
more than ever. Not only do the Libraries give support to the energies of the young they give
a valuable service to the elderly, in that they have a community link and a place of contact
where they can access books and information on all the local services. In addition they have
the added bonus of being able to interact with others who have similar interests and a place
to sit and chat. I think to lose all these and the many other benefits a Library offers would
be a sad day for all our local residents and a negation of our responsibilities to the future
generation. I recently complained about the closure of a psychiatric unit in Bentley and
was told it was to improve the service, it hasn’t and I don’t see how the Library closures will
improve or benefit the people of Doncaster.

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