As all good books do – let’s start at the beginning! I am Laura Newsome and I have been working at Shrewsbury public lending Library since I finished University in 2007. Five of those years have been as a Library Assistant, but at the beginning of 2013, I started a new role as Deputy Branch Manager. This entails overseeing staff timetabling on a weekly and daily basis, whilst also dealing with any issues that arise in-house from day-to-day. Though these administrative duties make up a large part of my new role, my tweets will focus more on the time spent with the public, as I also spend a lot of time on the main desk answering enquiries, helping with I.T issues on our public computers and anything else that comes our way!
I wanted to get involved with the Voices for the Library project to show the reality of what takes place in a busy public lending library in a small(ish) Shropshire town. Shrewsbury is steeped in history, and is most well known for being the birth-place of Charles Darwin. Indeed, the Library is housed in the building which he attended in its previous existence as Shrewsbury School. It’s a wonderful place with many interesting tales to tell, and hopefully I’ll be able to provide a little insight into its history during my week.
We are all aware of how out-dated the library stereotype is (in five years I don’t think I have actually ‘shushed’ anybody!), so I also want to take this opportunity to discuss the kind of people we actually get through our doors, the commitment of our fantastic staff, the changing role that libraries play in people’s lives today and what the future might hold.
I recently set up the official Shrewsbury Library Twitter feed with some of my colleagues, so if you are interested in following us long-term, then find us at @ShrewslibraryUK