Reading about how a book lover re-discovered libraries after several years made me think about the way we look at our customers.
It would be nice if libraries could attract more teenagers and young adults but let’s not forget that there are other important groups of people out there. Ok, most of our customers are older people or young families, but what’s wrong with that? Just because there are times in your life when you don’t fancy using a library, it doesn’t mean that you won’t come back to us later on.
Parents visit us to entertain their young children, older people come in to learn how to use computers or borrow books or meet people. If you’re unemployed you might come along to a job club or to apply for jobs or benefits online, or you might need a book at times of illness or bereavement. Or perhaps you just love reading and want to borrow books every week of your life.
I’m not saying we should stop trying to make our libraries fantastic places for teenagers to hang out in, but just that we shouldn’t be blinded by the cult of youth and undervalue everyone else.