Friday, April 04, 2008

What's Black And White And Red All Over?

Why, Ramsgate's new, super-duper library, of course!

Pootling down to Waitrose earlier to stock up on Millionaire Shortbread for the weekend, I was accosted by a KCC representative canvassing my views on what colour the interior of the rebuilt bibliotheque should be. My first instinct was, of course, to opine that it should be reminiscent of the glorious red, gold and green interior of Pugin's Grange here in the Millionaires' Playground.

That suggestion was, however, greeted with what I took to be rather huffy disdain, and I was shuffled over to a board covered in photos of municipal (urgh!) libraries from around the county. I must say they all looked more like something Linda Barker might have designed for a children's ward after a bad night on acid, but I eventually settled on a not-too-tawdry puce-coloured scheme. Having pointedly asked if the library, which burnt down in 2004 and is due to re-open later this year, would contain a museum as before ('No'), and whether we would be consulted on which books would be stocked ('No, we've already bought them'), I turned to the thorny question of whether it would be mostly a 'One-Stop Benefits Shop' as has proved all the go in Margate. 'No, that hasn't exactly been a rip-roaring success,' came the rather sharp response.

Meanwhille I see that our local biblio-bloke, Michael Child, met with a lukewarm reception when he tried to take photos of the ongoing works the other day. You can see his report, and pictures, here.


Michael Child said...

Richard as far as I can find out they are closing the tourist information office and putting it in the library, closing the council offices in York St and what ever replaces them also goes in the library, closing the maritime museum contents to go in the basement of Albion House with any other Ramsgate historical items. So any museum will be Under-Albion, word is that a developer has got their eye on the clock house. If there is any room for books in the library, I can’t find out what they bought or what criteria was used in their choice, I don’t suppose they bought any of their books from Albion bookshop, they certainly didn’t buy any from me, or ask what local people were interested in.

Anonymous said...

That's the first admission I've heard of the disaster that is Thanet Gateway.
I wouldn't be surprised though if the "One desk" for TDC turns out to be rather more, if Peter Gilroy has any say in the matter.

Anonymous said...

Michael I can tell you what the criteria for purchasing books will be. The Price, as the 8 shelves of Mills and Boon in Margate testify.

Anonymous said...

Sadly, people read Mills and Boon however much we might find this objectionable. You can't be snobby about books. At least they're reading something.

Millicent said...

What a crackpot idea - trying to fit all the exhibits from the Maritime Museum into the Albion cellar when there is a perfecrtly good building right on the harbour which they are not prepared to spend money on - well I for one will not be offering to help when they try and get the cannon up the hill then down the stairs into Albion House's cellar. What do they propose to do with all the exhibits which will not fit into the cellar - turn them into sculptures outside the new Turnip?

Anonymous said...

I have no objection to Mills and Boon per se. I object to them being bought because they are cheap and fill up the shelves nicely. But yes, at least they are reading something. Some of them are quite raunchy you know.