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Library Quest: Sherwood Branch Library

Library Quest: Sherwood Branch Library

When I started getting excited about libraries this week, my partner pointed out to me that there was a news story about Sherwood Branch library. If you don’t know, Sherwood is a neighbourhood to the North of Nottingham City Centre that was more or less created by the building of the tram network back in the early 1900s. That particular old tram network has gone, but Sherwood, an area of predominately Edwardian terraced houses, shops and a library, remains!

Sherwood branch library looks to have been built in about 1950 or 1960. It is of concrete and brick construction with a flat roof and has some shops below it.

I’ve stolen this image from the Nottingham Evening Post, after-all they’ve stolen so much from me… not literally, but figuratively. Except I’ve stolen this image literally.

I’ve stolen this image from the Nottingham Evening Post, after-all they’ve stolen so much from me… not literally, but figuratively. Except I’ve stolen this image literally.

I turned up at the Sherwood Branch library and locked my bike to the Sheffield stands outside. Again, the fabric of the branch library is rather tired. They do have a life and accessible automatic doors. I’m going to tell you now, I really love this library. The windows arranged along the west wall are large and let in lots and lots of light. Through the afternoon, friendly librarians fussed around the windows opening and closing them and adjusting the venetian blinds to keep the space pleasant.

I approached the desk and asked if it was okay to work on my laptop here. The librarian took the question at face value and directed me to choose anywhere to sit and did I have a GovWifi pass? Yes, I answered. Arranged along the window wall were several public access desktop computers, most of which were in use. There was one empty single desk and a large reading table, where a lady of about my age was already working on her MacBook. I set myself up at the other end of the same table.

It’s clear that the flat roof at Sherwood has been an issue. There was a lot of damage to the ceiling and a very bad area of damp in one corner that I noticed. The facilities generally were a little tired but well cared for. When I arrived there was a group of mums with pushchairs sat in a circle in another sectioned off area of the (more of less) one room library building. This tiny branch library was a buzz with activity. Quiet activity. Frankly it was a lovely space to work in. I’m amazed more people don’t use these space for co-working.

This library was particularly well stocked with Naruto graphic novels/Manga. The library assistants and I assume volunteers (one was in school uniform) busied amongst the shelves with a book trolley putting titles away. As expected the GovWifi here worked perfectly without issues. I was able to work from arriving at about 14:00 until nearly 18:00 when the library closed and got quite a lot done.

As with Central Library, Sherwood library is going to be closed and razed, but only in order to be replaced with a new building. You can read about that here https://www.nottinghampost.com/news/nottingham-news/development-plan-transform-out-date-2694232

Today’s thumbnail feels a little mean, but that’s not the intention. It shows some of the water damage at the Sherwood Branch Library.

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