Photo: View from Ampthill Park, Bedfordshire
Author: Andy Foster
An avid traveler with interests as varied as quizzing and soccer, it is not surprising that Andy Foster is also a lover of libraries. Andy worked at British Aerospace for some years, before deciding that his abilities could be put to better use as a teacher. This decision turned out to be a blessing for many hundreds of his students at Cranfield University’s Department of Air Transport who benefit not just from his passion for aviation and his accessibility, but also from his eagerness to help students stay connected to each other and to their alma mater.
I used libraries when I was a youngster growing up in Fleet, Hampshire, and then Bedford, Bedfordshire. I hope others will post about those libraries but if not I will later. But this one is the Ampthill library, which is in the town where I live. Ampthill library is described as “A community lending library with a collection of fiction and non-fiction books for children, teenagers and adults, DVDs and audiobooks for borrowing as well as free computer use” (Culture 24 website)
My family has made extensive use of the library. When the children were young we would take them to toddler mornings so that they could enjoy stories and playing with other children. As they got older and their ability to choose their own books increased, they would walk to the the library and find what they wanted to read. During the summer holidays the local council run libraries hold a reading challenge which encourages children to read more. Some of the other activities for children are:
The librarians are always friendly and helpful and if you can’t find a book on the shelves they can order it through inter-library loan.
Overall the town would be a sadder place without its own library and it is good to see that it is still well used by all ages.
The weather vane on top of the library is a tribute to the book, “Masquerade”about a buried golden hare, which was found in Ampthill Great park after an international search.