Tim Coates – British Public Library Advocate

Posted: July 19, 2006 in Public Libraries

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Unlike the name Nancy Pearl, Tim Coates may not be a name that rings any bells. But for anyone very interested in the fate of public libraries it may be a name to add to your inventory.

Here’s a bit from his bio:

” Tim Coates is a former bookseller who has become a well-known advocate for improvements in public-library service. He was the first U.K. bookseller to open an all-night bookstore with a cafe, sofas, and the comfortable style we now associate with bookstores around the world. In his current work, he strives to bring the same customer orientation to libraries.

Since 1999 Tim has pursued library improvement at the local and countrywide level by urging improved book ranges, longer hours, and more welcoming buildings. He is the author of “Who’s in Charge? Responsibility for the Public Library Service,” a report which is used now in many countries to assess public-library services, and he is working on a training guide for library managers as well as an updated edition of his “Who’s in Charge” report. He is a consultant who provides guidance to local councils and to departments of government. ”

I’d recommend swinging past his blog if you have any interest at all in the plight of public libraries in the UK. You never know, some of it could actually be applicable to libraries here in the States, too. He writes extensively on a broad range of topics, knows lots of people and is very interesting in his own right. Check him out if you get a chance.

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