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Bloomsbury Street

Astoness

TRUE BRUMMIE MODERATOR
Staff member
agree with you again phil..have to say i also fear for spring hill library..main reason being that its only a stones throw away from the new library in town...

lyn
 

sospiri

Ex-pat Brummie
Phil:

Having been involved in computerised library systems (including Birmingham's) since 1988 until a couple of years ago, the last ten years as a consultant, I've noticed the huge growth in the Schools Library Systems, where the school libraries are effectively a small branch of the Library Authority with their own budgets and media purchases being part of the central systems. This rather supercedes library visits by schools that we both knew many years ago. That leaves the branch libraries with a few pensioners and what amounts to an internet cafe (without the coffee). The reference sections, formerly used by local businesses to consult Kompass and similar directories, are now catered for by online services.

Sure those library "internet cafes" have done deals with the likes of Ancestry and Gales 19th Century Newspapers to allow library users limited free access from the branches, but branch libraries are now struggling to justify the huge outgoings to maintain the buildings for a small number of users. Some have experimented with opening on Sundays, but now we're down to minimum staffing and reduced service by closing on certain days of the week. Cataloguers are a dead breed as almost all the work is done by the British Library and about three specialist outsourcing companies.

Shortly we'll be left with large central libraries and a few mobiles servicing the old folks day centres, and empty big buildings standing on valuable development land. I don't like it any more than you, but I can't see an alternative way forward.

Maurice
 

Phil

Retired Layabout
Maurice

I've always said that the end of free passes that were earned on the weekly school visit to the baths that it would be the end of the swimming baths. So it was the same ending with the weekly school visit to the public library. I use my local library regularly and agree if it were not for the computer users most would be empty. I honestly admit that in my opinion the Council does not do enough to get the public to use these facilities because the sooner they stop using them altogether then they can close them and waste the funding on showpieces in the city centre that are more for visitors to gawp at and troll around than they are for the people of Birmingham.
 

john knight

signman
Nechells Green was and always was known to be the junctions of Rocky Lane, Nechells Park Road, Charles Arthur Street, Thimblemill Lane,Bloomsbury Street, and Nechells Place.
 

sospiri

Ex-pat Brummie
The times they are a-changing, Phil, whether we like it or not, and personally I don't. The libraries are free admission, but we do need something in there to attract users and for those at work during the day, it has to compete with TV and computer games and other attractions during the evening. I'm trying not to be negative, but at the same time I'm finding it awfully difficult to be positive. The very media that we are using right now is, I fear, the root of the libraries' downfall.

Maurice
 

Phil

Retired Layabout
Nechells Green was and always was known to be the junctions of Rocky Lane, Nechells Park Road, Charles Arthur Street, Thimblemill Lane,Bloomsbury Street, and Nechells Place.
John

You are the ideal person, as you lived closer than me, did you ever know that junction as Hyde Park Corner or the area as Bloomsbury?
 

cookie273uk

master brummie
I live in Chelmsley Wood and there seems to be hardly more visitors than staff, discounting PC users, how long will Solihull council stand for that, especially after the Government has frozen rate rises and cuts have to be made somewhere. Times are changing and we have to change with them. Eric
 

dek carr

gone but not forgotten
As said its down to use. I bet there wasn,t one person in Nechells that never use the library in the 50s even if it was just to get warm.Now we have a different population and I wouldn,t be surprised if the majority never new where the library was.
 

sospiri

Ex-pat Brummie
And it's not just Birmingham or the UK with this problem. It's the same all over Europe and America. Here in Aghios Nikolaos, a third of the building is used by the local cultural department and by the financial functions attached to that. So the building is only open during the normal business hours, Monday to Friday, and the majority of people in there are not looking at books!

Maurice
 

brumgum

Proud to be a Brummie!
Lyn

I called in there myself a few months back when I heard about the trouble with the front entrance because I had my suspicions then that they were waiting for what I considered to be a minor repair job to escalate into something else. Though this problem with the heating a plumbing gave them just the excuse they were looking for. I know these wonderful old buildings don't get the use that they were built for and I don't expect the Council to keep funding them when they are not being used. Though like swimming baths I remember when schools used to take each class for a weekly visit to the library and we were encouraged to use them as much as possible in our own time.

Perhaps if schemes like this were in place today our public amenities would get more use
Makes interesting reading..
https://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/local-news/4m-bill-repair-birminghams-libraries-6200821
 

Phil

Retired Layabout
Brumgum,


I commented on this article on the New Library thread, it's a pity they didn't cut back a bit on the gardens or cafeteria, neither of which have anything to do with libraries. perhaps then they could have repaired these buildings.
 

dek carr

gone but not forgotten
Been to the Community Centre today.Its quite ironic that they have money for new lighting, Heating and Fire Alarm System + decorating to bring the premises up to health and safety standards before they are able to move any books across. Something fishy going on if you ask me.
 

theodore

master brummie
I would be interested to know when Bloomsbury Street was first developed and if any maps are available showing its earliest time. Any early photos would also be of interest.
Peter
 

Vivienne14

Super Moderator
Staff member
There are few images on Bill Dargues site here with background to the area. https://billdargue.jimdo.com/placenames-gazetteer-a-to-y/places-b/bloomsbury/

I shall move your request to an existing Bloomsbury Street thread. Unfortunately many of the images on that thread were lost when the Forum was hacked some years ago. But if there are particular references you’re interested in, I’m sure members will try and help.

The existing thread is here. https://birminghamhistory.co.uk/forum/index.php?threads/bloomsbury-street.28050/

Viv.
 

Phil

Retired Layabout
On reading this thread again I notice that Dek was talking about all the books from Bloomsbury Library being moved across the road to the Community Centre. Does anybody know if this ever happened , I ask because I recently heard that the Community Centre is now privately owned. So if this is so and the books were relocated what has happened to the books?
 

Vivienne14

Super Moderator
Staff member
This advert from the Birmingham Journal in April 1843 suggests Bloomsbury Street was still being developed at that time, although Bill Dargue’s link gives a first reference to ‘ Bloomsbury’ as an area being in the 1830s. The earliest reference I’ve found so far to the Bloomsbury (B’ham) area is 1838. Viv.
 

Attachments

Phil

Retired Layabout
Since Viv has stated that she intends to merge this thread with another started by Theodore I will try to answer the question he has posted here.

This first section of a 1839 map show Bloomsbury Place as it was then hardly built on running down to an unbuilt Great Lister Street. Then with the advent of the railway by 1866 now Bloomsbury Street had crossed Great Lister Street and reached Rocky Lane where it continued on as Nechells Park Road.
 

Attachments

Phil

Retired Layabout
The first photo here is the beginning of Bloomsbury Street at the Junction Inn with Bloomsbury Street to the left and Great Francis Street to the right. The second photo shows the end of the street with Nechells Park Road ahead to the right Nechells place and to the left Rocky Lane.

Nechells Great Francis Street - Bloomsbury Street junction.jpgNechells High Park Rd.jpg
 
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