Letter: Keep commerce out of public libraries

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The Independent Online
Sir: The Government's support for "changed patterns of working" for public libraries (report, 20 February) follows a number of experiments in Sunday opening. These experiments have been inspired by a dubious wish to embrace the commercial values of the "market place" rather than by a genuine desire to improve public services. There is a strong element of window dressing in making one or two highly visible improvements to the service while the standard of the service as a whole is declining. In this atmosphere of enforced cuts, public libraries might be well advised to maintain existing services and hours of opening rather than introducing Sunday opening.

GRAHAM HEDGES

Secretary

Librarians' Christian Fellowship

Ilford, Essex

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