‘Cathedrals of the mind’ – AM’s praise for town library

A library that is the hub of its community has been praised by Plaid Cymru’s North Wales AM Llyr Gruffydd.

He visited Ruthin library as part of Libraries Week in Wales and was full of praise for the variety of community activities held in the centre.

Mr Gruffydd said: “I was struck by a quote by Caitlin Moran who described a library as ‘a cross between an emergency exit, a life raft and a festival. They are cathedrals of the mind; hospitals of the soul; theme parks of the imagination.’

“There are some fantastic libraries across Wales but this seemed the most appropriate place to visit during this week as it’s the one I and my children use on a regular basis.”

As well as meeting Llinos Davies, manager of library and customer services in Denbigh and Ruthin, he spent some time with the Dechrau Da session for toddlers and parents run by Glen Jones and Nina Jones.

Mr Gruffydd added: “Libraries traditionally have been quiet places and it’s still a peaceful place but the sessions in the back room was lively and a lot of fun for both the toddlers and parents. It’s a combination that is working and ensures the library remains an important hub for the whole community.”

Libraries support a range of agendas including increasing reading and literacy, improving digital access, greater prosperity by supporting entrepreneurs and people seeking work, supporting lifelong learning, providing cultural and creative experiences and supporting research and innovation.

250 million visits were made to public libraries in Great Britain last year. This is more than cinema and theatre visits, visits to the UK’s top ten tourist attractions and the number of people that went to live music gigs combined.

  • Young people are the group most likely to use public libraries. Across the British Isles 15-24 year olds more likely to use libraries than over 55s.
  • In Wales, during the past year, over 10.8 million books were borrowed from public libraries
  • 51% of us have a current library card and 47% have used a public library in the last twelve months.
  • Three out of four people in the UK and Ireland say that libraries are important or essential to their community.
Llyr Gruffydd AM joins the Dechrau Da group for a sing-song with Nina Jones and Glen Jones.
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