Inspirational Poet Meets Youngsters at Moorside High School

Werrington Community Managed Library invited Local poet Bert Flitcroft to work with Year 7 youngsters Moorside High School. Bert grew up in Lancashire and now lives in the Midlands. Bert was Staffordshire Poet Laureate 2015-17. Staffordshire Poet Laureate’s hold their positions for 2 years, and in that time their aim is to promote a love of poetry and creative writing.

Bert read and discussed a selection of his poems from his published collections then invited the children to write a poem of their own. The photograph shows a display of some of the best poems at the Library. There is another display to follow too.

So What?

Werrington are making close links in the community and with the local high school. This sort of commitment helps builds relationships particularly when the Library will be promoting its forthcoming Summer Reading Game. Displays of poetry in the library, is a simple but effective way of bringing in new people and generating interest in what’s happening in the Library.

An Amazing Amount of Authors

Since taking on the role of Volunteer Book Stock Manager at Kinver Community Managed Library, Val has actively sought out many local authors, creating a permanent display of their work in the library, adding their books to stock and organising both adult and children’s author events. There have been around 10 new authors showcased over the last year, highlighting a prolific talent in such a small village.

So What?

The author events have attracted a

Local Author Lynda Green with her book

combined audience of over 100, giving local authors an opportunity to promote their work and expand their audiences and have given Val an awareness of and an ability to confidently promote the Universal Offers, which are key set of guidlelines to deliver an effective 21st Century library service.

 

One of the local authors, Lynda Green, who also used to volunteer at Wombourne Library said of her event “I had a great time at Kinver Library regarding my book. Val was so helpful, and considering it was my first public talk, we were both very happy with how it went and with the turn-out”.

Lynda also received some very positive press coverage.

https://www.expressandstar.com/entertainment/2017/12/29/lyndas-novel-take-on-classic-fantasy-tales/

Overview of Our Council

Community Support Officer, Lisa Dyke, recently attended a County Council road show at Uttoxeter Library delivered by the Deputy Chief Executive and Director for Families and Communities, Helen Riley. Libraries sit in Families and Communities, along with a wide range of other departments such as Trading Standards and Children’s and Education Services and Helen regularly hosts these events to discuss important topics relevant to the directorate.

Lisa Dyke at the Event

So What?

With around 25 people attending, the event was held for any staff from Families and Communities departments and gave a wider understanding and a great opportunity to find out more about the directorate and the national picture affecting our services including the potential challenges we face. This was also an excellent opportunity to network with other colleagues in Staffordshire County Council.

Striving for Success

Once again, residents of Brewood are taking part in the annual ‘Best Kept Village (BKV)’ competition and the Community Managed Library continues to play a very important role. Last year Brewood received the ‘Best Kept Large Village in Staffordshire’ award and by coming together a whole community, hope to do as well, if not better, this year.

So What?

Earlier in the year the Community Library played host to a BKV information evening for around 40 visitors and is currently displaying some lovely posters designed by children from all the local schools. The volunteers have created a

Photos show the posters, the tubs and library grounds and the display in the library

fantastic related display to encourage book borrowing and the tubs and grounds around the library are being maintained not just by library volunteers but from local organisations and other individuals, promoting community cohesion and highlighting the library’s position as a village focal point and a community hub.

You never know who you are going to meet

Community Support Officer (CSO) Cathy Attwood, recently attended the Rugeley Annual Parish Assembly held in the Rose Theatre in Rugeley. It was a good opportunity to Network and find out more about Rugeley. There were the usual tables and displays from local community groups, including Rugeley Library and also Rugeley Rotary who

Library Staff Networking

are partnering with Staffordshire County Council to deliver Brereton Community Managed library. This was an excellent chance to network with other key local organisations.

 

CSO Cathy Attwood, could sense a lady looking at my name badge, but it wasn’t until she spoke to me that I recognised her as a partner that I had worked with on a youth project some 13 years ago. We reminisced all that was good about the project and how it had helped some vulnerable young people.

So What?

This shows that partnership working and projects well delivered can make a positive difference and be remembered long after the project is completed.

Lego-a-gogo!!

Great Wyrley Community Managed Library recently had their first meeting of the Lego Club. Taking the opportunity to utilise a time when the library is usually quiet the timeslot of 4:00 – 5:30pm on a Wednesday proved popular with 10 children attending Supported by the volunteers they created some excellent Lego structures. 2 of the children also joined the library and borrowed books.

So What?

Events and activities are a good way to attract people into the library and increase membership Not all children are glued to their computers or digital devices. There is an appetite for children’s activities at the library and Lego is as popular activity.

Big Clean Up Kicks off

A chilly day in early May didn’t dampen Library Volunteer Liz’senthusiasm as she joined in the Hednesford Town Council Community litter pick in the town centre. Several of the library volunteers joined in but it was hard to match Liz’s gusto! This demonstrates desire of the volunteers to make a difference in their own community, as well as the excellent partnership that has been built up between Midlands Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.

Determined that the area outside Hednesford Community Managed Library should be spick and span and rubbish free she took no persuading to don the obligatory bright orange high visibility vest and put the vacuum to good use.

Library Volunteer Liz

So What?

This demonstrates the community spirit of the library volunteers and partnership working between the library and Hednesford Town Council.

All Systems Go for Wilnecote Community Managed Library

Since The Wilnecote School took over Wilnecote Community Managed Library on Tuesday March 27th 2018, the volunteers have been busy working with the staff to introduce new events, groups and facilities. In addition to the recent introduction of a Craft Group, a Code Club and a Story time, a coffee machine has been obtained for the library to add to the feel of the library being a true Community Hub.

Wilnecote Community Managed Library

So What?

All these new innovations will help to imbed Wilnecote Community Managed Library as a true community hub for the local community, offering a huge range of services for all local people.

Supporting Library Users into Employment

In October 2017 Tamworth Community Together (a non for profit Community Interest Company) started to deliver a monthly Job Club at Glascote Community Managed Library. Since then attendance numbers have gradually increased and a total of 13 people accessed the Job Club during April 2018. The majority attended to use the internet for job searches, but also for enquiries about interview techniques, application forms, issues around setting up or accessing emails and for updating their CVs. 

 

So What?

The Job Club is a great example of partnership working, with Tamworth Community Together working with Midlands Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, who now run the library, and Staffordshire County Council, who also support the volunteers. The Job Club is also helping to establish the library within the wider community as a venue where local people can get help with a range of areas that can help them to find work.

Surprising What Happens in a Library!

Fiona Keane, Library Supervisor at Cheadle Library, had a bit of a surprise when browsing through the local newspaper the Times and Echo. She noticed the headlines, ‘Technophobes and Dancers Welcome’. Intrigued she realised it was a piece about the library! It describes how our IT Buddies can help support people to access the computers and invites people to our Latin Classes. Apparently keen dancers can learn the basics and new moves! Thankfully it encourages people to ring up and find out more as the Latin Class we offer is of the more learned variety. But it has given us food for thought. The staff are keenly waiting to see who will be arriving through the doors at the next Latin Class and whether they will be wearing silver sandals!

So What?

Local newspapers coverage is great for the library and this sort of feature is excellent. Hopefully, it will encourage some phone calls and intrigue whilst giving people a good chuckle too!