There's More to Libraries Than Learning and Books

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Byline: JOHN DOLAN

Dear Editor, -Paul Dale's reading of our position statement stirred John Goodman to criticise Birmingham libraries for thinking of image rather than books (Post, Aug 12). The Government requires us to publish a (short) 'position statement' and an annual plan setting out our work for the year.

This gives everybody the chance to consider and comment on the city's library service.

They are in every library and on the web for all to see.

Birmingham libraries have a reputation for good consultation with users and citizens. Of course, libraries are about books. They are also about learning, information, modern communications and being part of community life. We have a legal duty to provide for everyone in the city in their learning, information and cultural needs. We do this with books, journals and many other media including free internet access to information on society and government and culture and leisure of many kinds. All this is to brighten and enlighten our lives.

We relish and promote literature in the biggest children's book festival in Britain (in May) and in the forthcoming Birmingham Book Festival (October). …