Due to the Coronavirus crisis and the library being closed we have decided to replace our programme of face-to-face talks with online events. These will be inclusive for all who have a computer or phone. These events will initially be free for all. Our first event is a poetry evening on Weds 6 May.
The Friends of Milton Road library ‘Sharing Stories’ volunteers are
delighted to announce that from September their FREE Saturday
morning storytelling sessions are continuing in the newly re-opened
library. What’s more, they will now happen fortnightly – come along and check them out!
These stories are best for the under 5s, but the whole family are welcome.
10.30 to 11.15 every other Saturday during term time
These are drop-in sessions but children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
To celebrate this and as part of the Chesterton Festival, we will be holding a series of events at the library and its brand new two community rooms. This is a great opportunity for you to visit your new library as well as getting a taste of future events.
Every day we have:
- 10:30am Coffee morning with films and other attractions
- 3pm Events for children and teenagers
- 9am – 6pm Library open Monday to Friday. 10am on Saturday
Join us for the main opening event where there will be activities for all ages.
- Community stalls
- Garden Party
- Tea & cake
- Live Music
- 3pm Speeches, cake and unveiling of the painting by Nicholas Juett
Pop in and join us for a coffee and a look at your new library and community rooms, which are available to hire.
On Thursday, why not take part in “Knit & Natter with Kira?
We have some local interest films lined up:
- Monday 24th around 11am: The Other Cambridge A 1964 Anglia TV ‘Here and Now’ documentary, featuring an alternative tour of Cambridge led by architectural journalist Kenneth Robinson with interesting scenes around the city of that time.
- Wednesday 25th – tbc
- Friday 27th – tbc
Pop in and join us for look at your new library and community rooms, which are available to hire. Have a look just before you collect your children from School or Nursery, or bring them with you. This is a great opportunity you to visit your new library and get your membership card.
On Tuesday 10:30am to 9pm one of the Community Rooms will be dedicated to board games. The Friends of Milton Road Library group will providing a selection of games, though feel free to bring your own.
Help people avoid having to judge a book by it’s cover by adding a short review of any books your read so other people can also enjoy them.
The Hour of Code started as a one-hour introduction to computer science, designed to demystify “code”, to show that anybody can learn the basics, and to broaden participation in the field of computer science. It has since become a worldwide effort to celebrate computer science, starting with 1-hour coding activities but expanding to all sorts of community efforts.
Sign up details to follow…
A lunchtime networking event from 12 til 2pm by the Business & IP Centre Cambridgeshire
Sign up details to follow…
By local historian David Stubbings
Cambridge Tramways had a short history form the late nineteenth century up to the first world war. They were horse-drawn but lost out to the motor-bus as so many did that had not been electrified.
The Tram Depot in East Road is the last remaining relic of the system that is in use in Cambridge today.
Michael Brown is a published poet and author who lives in Chesterton. During 2019/2020 Michael will champion events in the library, including activities as part of Cambridge University Festival of Ideas. Michael also works for Cambridge Literary Festival. Join us for a poetry evening that will include poetry performance and a relaxed fun writing workshop. If you have a local themed poem that you discuss, please bring it along.
by Geoff Hales Travelling Theatre Letters Home: the story of Gertrude Bell
Gertrude Bell (1868 – 1926) was a traveller whose journeys took her all over the deserts of the Middle East, mostly on the back of a camel. Her experience of the tribes, the wildernesses, and the remote oases later made her invaluable to British Intelligence, where she worked with T. E. Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia). From wherever she went, she wrote home to her father, describing her adventures. The letters tell of an amazing life.
Alison Bruce is the author of eight crime novels and two non-fiction titles. Her first novel, Cambridge Blue (2008), was described by Publishers Weekly as an ‘assured debut’ and introduced both detective, DC Gary Goodhew, and her trademark Cambridge setting. She went on to complete the DC Goodhew series with a further six novels before writing the psychological thriller I Did It for Us.
Alison is a proud supporter of local libraries and is the patron of Lakenheath Library in Suffolk. Alison teaches creative writing at Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge.
This talk is at 7pm and is being organised by the Library Service so applications need to be addressed to them.
The library services are thinking about possible names for the new community room spaces at the library, so will be coming up with some suggestions soon.
Can you think of anyone you’d like to see celebrated by having one of these new rooms named after them? If you have any ideas you’d like to share, please feel free to pop into the mobile library at Roger Ascham to write your thoughts down on a post-it note.
We have commissioned artist Nicholas Juett to create some bespoke artwork for the new Milton Road Library. Nicholas grew up nearby, attending Milton Road Primary School, and the library was an important space for him as a boy. He spent time sketching the old building before it was taken down and part of the new main painting will include book spines.
Nicholas would like to include some of the titles of the all-time favourite books of the people who will be using the library – so we want to know what yours is.
Please come to the mobile library at Roger Ascham to write your favourite book title down on a post-it note – who knows, maybe your favourite book will make it into the artwork!
The Friends of Milton Road Library have been actively supporting our local library since 2011 when we successfully worked with other Friends groups across the county to keep our local libraries open when threatened with closure by the county council.
Having won that battle it was discovered that there were structural problems with our Milton Road library and it was once again under threat of closure. As a Friends group we supported the County in developing plans for a more viable future and also worked to secure £100,000 from the City Council for providing community facilities in the new building.
We helped to carry out an extensive consultation including:
- a paper and on-line questionnaire,
- open meetings,
- 3 surveys at Milton Road School of Key Stage 1, Key Stage 2 and Parents; and
- a young persons’ group discussion
From this it was clear that there was great support for the library and for potential ways to develop it further as a hub for community activities. We were able to see more clearly how this municipal building might be open much more than the current 27 hours per week use as a library. It could be a more flexible place used much more of the time. A wide range of ideas emerged including:
- offering a safe, accessible and flexible community space suitable for groups/services working with members of the community
- spaces to host children’s parties, events for pre-school children and perhaps an after-school club,
- A venue for local clubs and interest groups in the day and evenings, such as poetry sessions, book club, film club, and adult education classes for older people.
- A café, information centre, art exhibitions etc
Members of the Friends have been a part of the County Council’s library steering group since it was established in 2016. Our aim has been to represent the needs of the community we represent and we are delighted that:
- the ground floor area will be fully accessible and as flexible as possible. Book shelving will be easily movable so that the main library can itself be adapted at times for different purposes. Two community rooms will be provided and have moveable partitions so that they can form a bigger area or opened up with the library so that whole ground floor can be used for large events. Toilets and a kitchen will be accessible for all users of the building.
- The original portico has been retained and will be rebuilt to form the main entrance to the new building.
- The library will have an area for children but also a separate area for teenagers with some of the computers located there and available for after-school study. The community rooms will have video screens and easily storable furniture so the rooms can be used a for a wide variety of purposes.
- The outside spaces will also be as welcoming, accessible and flexible as possible, offering a valuable and important community green space with mature trees in this area. The fencing will be lower and more welcoming than previously and we hope to use the garden for more events especially in summer months.
- During the project we were able to crowd fund for the wonderful set of hoardings around the site. The artwork for this came from the children at Milton Road School and was skilfully brought together by graphic artist Patsy Rathbone. When no longer needed around the site the hoardings boards will be given to the school but it is also planned to use elements of the artwork within the new library.
- The Friends have also commissioned the artist Nicholas Juett, who lives locally, to provide two new paintings for the new building to recall memories of the old buildings.
- Plans are now being made to celebrate the opening and ensure the widest possible use for the new spaces as possible by our community.
Come and see the new designs planned for the library interior. Library Services are running a public engagement session on Saturday 24th November 2018 from 11:00-15:00 at the Roger Ascham Library Site. This is a free drop-in event and all are welcome.
Our wonderful team of story sharers are volunteering again this term to read to small groups of reception children from Milton Road Primary School. The children will be walking across to the Milton Road Library bus with their teacher Mrs Bliss and clambering aboard to explore and share the wonderful story books in the collection. Many thanks to Marion, Jenny, Helen and Chris for their support.
The bus is our temporary provision whilst the building is redeveloped. It offers a surprising number of books and is open on four days of the week (see above for opening times).
Many thanks to Jannett Klinke for sharing these photos from the old building. So looking forward to seeing the spaces we will be opening up soon in our exciting new building.
Hard at work installing the new and colourful hoardings outside of the library site to brighten the corner! Thank you for everyone who contributed in one way of another.