Prunksaal library, Vienna

The death of the reading library

7 May 2014 11:51

‘Quiet Zone: No Laptops Please’. So read the paper signs stapled as an afterthought in a dust-cloaked corner of the Radcliffe Camera. The Rad Cam is the magnificent Palladian dome… Continue reading

Frankfurt Book Fair - Day 5

Annals of Odd Complaint: Moaning that Google Does Exactly What You Say You Want It To Do - Spectator Blogs

20 November 2012 11:21

Via Tim Worstall, here’s Jeanette Winterson: A fiery Jeanette Winterson has called for the hundreds of millions of pounds of profit which Amazon, Starbucks and Google were last week accused… Continue reading

Claude Monet taking in the air and the water lilies in his garden at Giverny, circa 1910. Image: Getty

Plein-air pleasures and the great indoors

24 October 2012 16:44

Some say it’s the walk there that does it. The promenade down a rambling city path and through a crowd of coffee-swigging commuters that fuels the inspiration that can only… Continue reading

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Two defining coalition reforms clash

13 April 2011 13:36

The big society is crossing swords with the localism agenda in Brent, north London. You may recall the Friends of Kensal Rise Library, a voluntary group that was being frustrated… Continue reading


Cuts are inspiring innovation

17 March 2011 17:08

The Big Society’s health is recovering. Despite the fevered clamour about library closures, some councils and communities are being positive about re-organising their services. After wide consultation with schools and… Continue reading