Rory Stewart MP raised awareness of the first-ever national Libraries Week with a visit to Penrith Library, where he met with Community Services Manage Kay Metcalfe to talk about a number of new initiatives in the library.
In this inaugural Libraries Week, Rory’s visit helped to celebrate all the creative, innovative and diverse activities that British libraries have to offer – from code clubs, to play areas, to supporting healthcare initiatives with shelves dedicated to cancer and dementia.
Rory Stewart MP said: “I always enjoy visiting Penrith Library, which has such a great atmosphere, excellent staff, and is always filled with keen readers. Not only that, but it has one of the best sections on local history that I have seen, and is just a brilliant community resource. Kay and her team are clearly doing something right, given how many engaged people I have seen in here today. This just goes to show how important libraries are to our communities.”
Libraries support a range of agendas including increasing reading and literacy, improving digital access, greater prosperity by supporting entrepreneurs and people seeking work, supporting lifelong learning, and providing cultural and creative experiences. Last year, 250 million visits were made to the UK’s libraries, more than cinema and theatre visits. More than 50 per cent of us have a library card, and three out of four people agree with Rory that libraries are essential to their communities.
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