Monday, 4 February 2013

National Libraries Day: use it or lose it!

This Saturday is National Libraries Day, part of a celebration of libraries all over the UK - and that seems like the perfect time to remind people to pay a visit to Arbury Court Library... or better still, join us for a protest!

In recent months our library has seen its share of cuts, yet it remains a valuable space at the heart of our community, with friendly, helpful staff, a range of books for children and adults, computer facilities and a host of other resources. Sadly, as recent media reports have shown, visitor numbers have dropped in the last year from 42,000 a year to 30,000 - at the same time as its budget, opening hours and staff numbers have all been reduced.

We know our community loves its library and wants it to stay - that was proved in 2010, when hundreds of you signed a petition to protect the branch, and again just last month when gig-goers helped us raise more than £800 for the library at two events. Now we're calling on people to help the library again, in one of two ways:

  1. Join us on National Libraries Day for a protest against the recent cuts to our library provision. FOAL members will gather outside the library at 10.30am on Saturday 9 February to make our voices heard, and we'd love to see you there too.
  2. Pay Arbury Court Library a visit. The more people walk through its doors, the better we can show just how loved and needed it is, and the stronger our case is for protecting it. As the age-old saying goes: use it or lose it!
FOAL is currently exploring ways to use our recently-raised funds to add extra facilities to enhance the library, and we look forward to sharing those with you soon. In the meantime, why not use National Libraries Day as a reason to pop in and see what it already has to offer? The branch is open from 10am to 2pm on Saturday, or for a full list of opening hours, visit Cambridgeshire County Council's website.

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Fundraiser with Sugarbeat and Swamp Truck, 18 January

We're very proud to be hosting a corker of a fundraising gig this month with two great local bands, Sugarbeat and Swamp Truck. All profits from the event, which takes place on Friday 18 January at the Portland Arms, will go to support activities at Arbury Court Library.

Sugarbeat are Cambridge's premier punk pop covers band, playing foot-stomping classics including anything from The Sonics to Ceelo Green via The Buzzcocks, Talking Heads, Orange Juice, The Killers and Miles Kane - guaranteed to get people dancing. Southern rockers Swamp Truck are a Cambridge-based five-piece playing good time tunes from the likes of Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, Hank Williams and Steelers Wheel. Expect a night of cracking tunes and great fun, and all in support of your favourite library.

The gig starts at 7.30pm on Friday 18 January at the Portland Arms in Chesterton Road, Cambridge. Tickets cost £5 and can be bought on the door or in advance from We look forward to seeing you there!