Banksy to help keep Bristol libraries open
In the UK, anonymous street artist Banksy has offered support to keep all of Bristol’s libraries open, reports the Bristol Post.
Bristol City Council had announced budget cuts in February last year of £1.4 million ($A2.5m), which would mean 17 of the city’s 27 libraries would be closed, in order to pay back the council’s £108 million ($A192m) deficit by 2023. The council then backtracked on the decision, saying it had found enough money ‘to keep every single library’ open.
In a public forum after the council’s cabinet meeting last week, Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees revealed that Banksy would be supporting the library service after a community member asked about ‘rumours that a philanthropist had stepped forward to help libraries in Bristol’.
Rees confirmed the speculation but warned, ‘you have to be careful with rumours’. He said, ‘It’s just that a very well known person from Bristol wrote in and asked us the nature of the challenge and to outline what support we need as a city to meet that challenge and that person was Banksy’. He added, ‘There is nothing signed and delivered, and so far it is just a conversation that we had’.
Deputy mayor for communities Asher Craig said other prominent people had come forward to offer financial support to the library service. ‘Banksy is one of a couple of outside persons of interest and they may be investments in community parts not investing in the coffers of the council,’ she said.
Category: Library news International