The kindness of public librarians

I’ve often written about public libraries but not for some time. I have been spending a lot of time in them though lately, as I’ve been writing a book. It’s a book on the 50 year history of Liverpool Housing Trust, one of the ‘Cathy Come Home’ era housing associations and a place where I first […]

On knowing the price of everything and the value of nothing

  Thoughts from 2015. Who knows where these sayings come from? Anyway, Sarah and I are getting on with our now twenty years long and rising conversation about life and the living of it, when I come out with more or less the title of this piece. “The trouble is, they seem to know the price […]

In Liverpool: On National Libraries Day

Well where else would I go on such a day? I’ve spent the last couple of Saturdays working in my local library. I love to go there when I want to really concentrate on writing something. I love too the serendipity of finding what I didn’t even know I was looking for when accidentally sat […]

Lister Steps: Walking into the future? Part Two

Returning to Lister Drive and the possible future of its near derelict library building. In Part One of our exploration of Lister Drive, between Old Swan and Tuebrook, we found that it once had three buildings by Liverpool’s most celebrated municipal architect, Thomas Shelmerdine, a library, a school and a swimming baths. The home, for […]

Lister Steps: Walking into the future? Part One

A two part pictorial special on plans to bring the almost derelict Lister Drive library building back to life. I’ve spent a good deal of time this past year writing about, thinking about and talking about public libraries and austerity politics. Trying to work out how we hold on to as many as possible while […]

Radicalised? Me too.

Some thoughts on why ‘being radicalised’ is not necessarily a bad thing. Though what happens before or afterwards may very well be. I had a very conservative religious upbringing and attended single faith primary and secondary schools. In my secondary school I was given special instructions, along with a small group of other boys, in […]