What can I do?

1) Write

In the first instance, you can contact the following to express your views about the library.  A letter has more impact than an email, but an email is better than nothing!  (In any case, it will be helpful if you can copy your email/letter to this address: savesummertownlibrary@gmail.com).

At the County Council:

John Jackson, Director for Social and Community Services
Social and Community Services,
County Hall,
New Road,
Oxford, OX1 1ND
Email: john.jackson@oxfordshire.gov.uk

The local MP:

Nicola Blackwood MP
House of Commons,
SW1a 0AA
Email: nicola.blackwood.mp@parliament.uk

The local county councillors (they are supportive of the library, but the more communication they receive, the stronger the case they can make to the council):

Councillor Jean Fooks: jean.fooks@oxfordshirelibdems.org.uk

Councillor John Goddard: cllrjgoddard@oxford.gov.uk

2) Sign the petition...

A paper copy of a petition in support of the library is available to sign at the NOA Community Centre (part of the Ferry Centre, location here).  If you'd like your own copy to print out and ask your friends and neighbours to sign, please email savesummertownlibrary@gmail.com.  (We'll try and work out a way to put it up on the website, too...). 

3) Read...

Continue to use the library, borrow books, show how valued it is (and tell your friends, too...)

4) Think...

Forward this link to your friends and neighbours!

If you're interested in being in touch with others who want to save Summertown Library, email 
What else does the campaign need?  Email, and/or post your ideas here...


  1. Well done SaveSummertownLibrary for putting together a campaign so quickly.

    I've e-mailed Blackwood & Jackson and I'll let you know if anything comes back.

    I've heard the main justification for closure is that the Central Library is only 1.5 miles away, so I guess the more arguments to counter this (accessibility for the elderly, disabled, children after school) the better?

    For me, it is also a matter of local character. Rising rents and rates make Summertown more like any other High Street every year, so any focus of our individual community such as the library needs to be fiercely guarded.

  2. I've had a response from Jackson which didn't really say much other than to keep an eye on the council website.

    Response from Blackwood was much longer and gave example of West Wycombe community library that is run by volunteers. She encourages those with specific recommendations or suggestions to get in touch with her or Jackson.

    I agree with Dan that the library is a great community and meeting place. I have 2 small children and we have loads of books at home - we don't need anymore - and so the library is a place to go to interact with other children/parents and to learn about sharing books, that the library is a resource that you can use to learn/teach yourself about
    new things. There is something about the ceremony of making a trip to the library that emphasises the importance and value of books and reading.

    The fact that we can walk there is crucial and we've never been to the city library - it is just too much hassle.

    The alternative is

  3. I think that the point about access for the disabled and the elderly is very important. Having been to a meeting of the Oxford Bus User Group it is clear that since the start of the Transform Oxford reorganisation of the buses it has become far more difficult for the disabled and for the elderly to get to the city centre.