There could be a new library for Woolwich?
If it's not just rumour, this will be a good thing.
I've worried about the demise of The Library for years. You just don't know how well they are used. When I lived in the district of Lewishamshire, I used to make use of the Open Learning Centre, a cheap way to boost my basic computing skills.
I must admit that I love libraries, but can't stand reading, so I'm my own worst enemy. Libraries have recognised people like me and spread their net by introducing CDs, DVDs, internet access and probably start selling sacks of potatoes by the front door. Even though I've not taken a book out of the library since library membership cards were pieces of card folded into a small pocket, I use libraries alot. Borrowing CDs is a great way of trying out new flavas (I think that's yoof talk). Of course, I could flick through iTunes Music Store instead.
Well, if Woolwich does get a new library, I hope it's a proper library, a proper building for learning and reading, not just an uninspiring room with a 'community centre' next door and a 'family creche'. Screaming kids and 'SILENCE' just don't go together.
When Peckham Library opened, I went to visit straight away. Being a bit of a literary heathen, yet again, I didn't go for the books, I went for the architecture. The building is fantastic. I'm a big fan of modern architecture and this looked great. A bold statement for London architecture and helped put another much maligned and forgotten part of our city on the architectural map. My only thought was that I wished there were more books. Minor detail or does it just reflect the changing role of the library?
If the Thames Gateway project happens, Woolwich has to play a big part in it. It's all very well reporting bold headlines in the local press about a potential development of the largest shopping centre in Europe, or whatever it's meant to be, but if it's cheap and tacky architecture, it'll be Europe's largest crap shopping centre.
I've very little trust in town planners, I mean, just look at the tens of thousands of acres of dull, uninspired new housing estates. Did I hear someone say "Thamesmead"? It'd be a good thing to get involved now to get our voices heard and try to get quality rather than quantity into Woolwich & The Thames Gateway. Largest shopping centre in Europe? Big doesn't equal good.