Austerity Max

The last 30 hours or so have seen the UK lashed by heavy rain and strong wind: it feels just like summer!  Sadly, this has all come too late for a great Sawston institution.

On Saturday morning, I wandered into the village to take a book back to the library.  When I arrived, the library was gone.  Not closed, but totally gone.  Apparently, it burnt to the ground – not sure when, but I’m hoping while I was away or I am even less observant than even I thought.  I know councils are trying to cut costs – but this does seem a bit extreme.  Perhaps it represents some canny work to make our council tax go further: it not only saves the cost of the library but will also bring in some much needed cash when the insurance company pays up.

Before lawyers become excited, I don’t think it was the council “arson” around – though unlike the Prodigy, I don’t imagine most twisted fire-starters admit their guilt quite so publicly.   There did seem to be some building work going on adjacent to the library last time I visited (pre-combustion) and I suspect this may be implicated in Sawston’s loss.  Either that or someone had a rather disproportionate response to an overdue book fine.

Given these difficult financial times, I suspect we may have lost our library for good.    I fear it’ll be Shelford or the Central for my storage-free reading needs from now on.  If I had one, I’d sport a black armband – or perhaps a minute’s silence would be a more appropriate mark of respect.  Shhh!

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