YEP Says, October 9: Libraries must start new chapter to get us through their doors

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...and how just half-an-hour can help city’s hospices

LEEDS is far from the only local authority to look to its libraries as a way of saving money.

From Cornwall to Glasgow they have been pinpointed by councils desperate to make up shortfalls in central Government funding.

But that does not mean that there aren’t serious concerns about proposals to cut opening hours. And rightly so.

The fact that thousands of people in the city offered their views as part of a public consultation exercise – numbers that are almost unheard of during such processes – speaks volumes.

People care deeply about their public libraries. The key question, however, is whether they use them enough to justify them staying open.

The good news is that the proposals set to be voted on by councillors next week do not include shutting any of Leeds’s libraries and have apparently been finalised after taking the public comments on board.

However, as with any public service – especially at a time of stringent cutbacks – it’s a case of use it, or risk losing it.

The local library is a precious resource and often a focal point of local communities, but more can and should be done to encourage people to use them.

If your library had the feel of a friendly bookshop or cosy coffee house and more going on, wouldn’t you be more inclined to pay a visit?

Spare half-an-hour to help our amazing hospices

IT’S wonderful to see the fun activities being staged in support of our very special Hospice Half Hour Appeal.

Fundraisers of all ages are joining in to help us boost the totals for St Gemma’s and Wheatfields with everything from quizzes to biscuit-decorating.

But we still need more people to get involved in order to push us over the magic £3m mark.

So if you’ve got half-an-hour to spare between now and Sunday, please put it to good use by doing something for the appeal.

It’s 30 minutes that could the extraordinary work of the city’s hospices for years to come.

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