Two weeks ago we relaunched our monthly cultural mail, where we are inviting artists, influencers and thinkers to share their concerns, thoughts and hopes for our region. For the first take over, Saltburn based novelist and poet Carmen Marcus who reflected upon the role that libraries have played over the course of her life.
Libraries are facing a culture of change across the country. With budgets being cut, increasing reliance of volunteer staffing, the challenge of the internet and different types of activities and events being programmed within libraries to get people through the doors we are asking what are libraries really for? What is precious about them and what can we do to help recognise this and to protect them?
You can read Carmen’s piece House of Books – What Are Libraries For? here and see how you can get involved by submitting your own 500 word piece of writing:
James is Tees Valley Arts’ Executive Director. He has previously worked as Senior Curator at Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art and as Co-Director of the art project NEW LINTHORPE. He is currently completing a PhD examining the cultural history of Teesside.