Thursday, 28 February 2013

Lisa Jewell Backs Moray Library Closures Fight

The fight to save Moray libraries has landed another big-hitter of the literary world's support.

Best-selling writer Lisa Jewell has joined the likes of Stuart MacBride, Alex Gray and Mark Billingham to criticise Moray Council's plans to close seven libraries under the guise of  'budget savings'.

Lisa, whose debut Ralph's Party, propelled her straight into the A-list of UK fiction writers said her local  library was where she first discovered her love of books.

"My sisters and I were taken to our local library every week by our mother," said Lisa.

"I don't remember much about my childhood, but I do remember the Ant & Bee books on the third shelf down, I do remember the mahogany panelling and the nice ladies behind the desk always ready to help us find what we were looking for. And I remember growing up in that tiny library, moving from the children’s corner to the main library, from Judith Kerr to Agatha Christie to Dickens as my tastes developed."

The Sunday Times bestseller is still a regular library user and is introducing the next generation of booklovers to the place she clearly adores. Lisa said the idea of losing libraries - "a cornerstone of civilisation" - would break hearts.

"I'm going to the library this afternoon, in fact, with my own daughters," she commented.

"Their memories will include computers and colourful play areas as well as books and helpful ladies. And of course, as a published writer, I rely on libraries to make my books accessible to readers who wouldn't otherwise read them.

"There are so many reasons to keep libraries open, it's not just about books, it's about community and childhood and the very basic tenets of a civilisation.

"Seeing libraries boarded up and bulldozed and redeveloped will break our hearts. And once they’re gone they're gone. Forever. And with them a million childhood memories and unread books. We will look back on this and shake our heads with disbelief. Our libraries, all of them, need to be saved.”

:: Visit Lisa's website at:  http://www.lisa-jewell.co.uk/