Bring back books, libraries told

<p>Reading and books must be put back at the heart of libraries, the Reading Agency director Miranda McKearney told a warmly received seminar at the show.</p><p>McKearney called for the spotlight to be cast on the innovative reading projects run by public libraries, many of them fixed around the new wave of media coverage of books. "Our vision is of libraries as the hub of a powerful community buzz around reading."</p><p>This autumn's literacy promotion from the BBC would kick-start long-term partnerships between libraries, the Reading Agency and the media--and BBC Radio 4's "Open Book" show would devote an entire programme to public libraries on 10th July, McKearney added.</p><p>The Reading Partners scheme, linking publishers to libraries, was helping branches to haul themselves onto the radar. "Public libraries are getting a profile that was unheard of a few years ago. Adult publishers simply don't know anyone in public libraries--but they want to learn. We want to wake the world up to the power of libraries."</p>