Leading author helps Moray community to create its own library

Despite the closure of their local library a Moray community is carrying on the fight to promote book reading as a vital educational and social tool.

Hopeman Library was closed as part of Moray Council’s cash saving measures despite a fierce fight by the local community to keep it open.

The local facility was one of four that Councillors narrowly voted to shut down after agreeing to keep those at Burghead, Dufftown and Cullen open after being threatened with legal action.

In Hopeman a local group has been formed seeking to create a new community library. At the heart of the effort is Vivien Hendry, a local parent who was at the centre of the legal challenge that eventually forced a change of heart from the local authority.

Ms Hendry said: “The library in Hopeman is sorely missed as we always expected it would be – but rather than just accepting our fate many people in the local community have come together to address the situation.

“We are actively seeking funding for a Community Library and Hub in Hopeman and at the same time organising a number of events to raise the resources required to establish and run our own library.”

Leading authors from throughout the UK lent their support to the campaign to retain libraries in Moray and these included best-selling Children’s author Lari Don. The Edinburgh-based writer is to attend a fundraising coffee afternoon and series of workshops in Hopeman next month.

Ms Hendry said: “Lari will be at the Hopeman Memorial Hall on Saturday, April 12 from 1pm, when she will conduct a workshop for 4 to 7-year-olds on ‘picture books and noisy stories’, then from 2.15pm will talk to 7 to 12-year-olds on her ‘Fabled Beast’ series.

“From 3.45pm she will discuss here latest book, ‘Mind Blind’, a thriller for teenagers, as well as chatting about how to research and write chases and fight scenes – that will be suitable for anyone aged 11 or over.

“We will have stalls and a raffle during the course of the afternoon with many great prizes on offer.”

Entry to the event will be just £1 for children and £2 for adults with all proceeds going towards the Community Library and Hub.

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