The Right to Roam Libraries

April 24th, 2012

Towards the end of a posting at the Wellcome Library weblog commemorating the 80th anniversary of the mass trespass that led, in time, to the creation of Britain's first National Parks and the establishment of the Right to Roam, the subject turns to libraries:

One of the inspirational presentations [at a symposium in London last year] came from information professionals in the Swedish city of Gävle, describing an initiative that promoted the city's libraries, archives and museums together under the slogan "Kulturell Allemansrät" – the cultural right to roam. A library gives its users the same freedom that the Manchester Rambler needed: access to the whole world of knowledge, without restrictions (except for a few on behaviour that harms other people's rights: […]), without the concept of trespassing. The world of knowledge is laid out: and readers have the right to roam.

Damn straight.1

  1. Reading that passage, I couldn't help but think that a recording of Jerusalem should have been playing in the background. Well, either that or the Manic Street Preachers' A Design for Life.

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