It has been a very unusual year. Most of it was spent in fighting to clarify the ‘feasibility’ of Haringey’s plan to move our library out of our building–co-locating in a new space in Jacksons Lane Community Centre. It was not a happy time for library supporters or staff . This was complicated by unnecessary infighting amongst supporters until the point when the council jumped the gun on the decision in Cabinet and united us all.
When the dust cleared and the scheme was found to be unfeasible, we discovered that the community was confused as to whether there was a library here at all and if it would stay. Visits and issues dropped and spirits drooped.
It was then that we realised afresh what strength there was and is in our team of librarians –Devi and Irene and the part-timers Andrew, Amanda, and the rest. Not only had they fielded constant questions about the co-location from puzzled users but they had also kept all the library activities going and constantly planned new ones. They have been front-line workers and largely unreported stars in the fight for the best library services possible—we salute them .
HLAG kept going with happy events like our Garden Party for SuperHeros and our annual Pumpkin Party – despite a failure by Sainsburys to honour our order for pumpkins. We also had a very successful art workshop for kids with Jane Ray and recently an evening of reminiscences with Annabel Leverton. And we have a presence at Fair in the Square. CityRead 2018 promoted a workshop in conjunction with Holloway Art Lending Library –writing about a picture– which was extremely entertaining. See the results on their website, www.artlending.org.uk
Yet our committee marches on, making plans, hoping for change, keeping things moving, cooperating with other supporters. There is such a positive spirit in our group that it gives us all hope for the future of Highgate library. We always need more people to bring new ideas and challenges so please don’t be shy about asking to join us.
What is ahead? It is up to you! We have plans to continue our pattern of events and also to establish a Childrens Literature festival with talks, workshops and displays throughout the year. It will be focused mainly on Tots to Tens in 2018/9 — the opportunities are exciting and challenging. Let us know if you want to take part!