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Forest Hill Community Library - Crowdfunder
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Posts: 513
Joined: May 2012
Post: #1
10-10-2016 10:52 AM

At the risk of creating yet another library thread, I thought something with a more upbeat headline than 'cuts' would be appropriate in order to draw attention to what's being achieved.

The people behind the successful bid to turn our council-run library into a community library are now getting the keys to the building.

But they need to raise £6,000 to pay for a whole bunch of things until the business model kicks in and some revenue is generated. This from their crowdfunder website:

Forest Hill Library is a community run in South East London. We are solely reliant on generating our own income to maintain and run the library building and services. Lewisham Council will continue to provide books and the lending software, but we have to provide and maintain the structure of the building, shelves, IT, cleaning, heating and lighting, non-book-borrowing services and all staffing. We have to pay licences, taxes, legal expenses, insurance..  the list is almost endless!

We have a fantastic community spirit in Forest Hill, and hope to raise extra funds from local residents and businesses who know how important a well run library is for the community.

Please help support the library, thank you in advance.

I learned recently that because the community library does not yet have charitable status, it has to pay business rates. To Lewisham. For the privilege of running a Lewisham library. Yep, totally nuts. But you can start to see why they need initial funding.

The crowdfunder is here:

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Posts: 3,261
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #2
11-10-2016 02:20 PM

Thanks Mr_Numbers.

And thanks to all who have supported so far. After a week we have raised just under £2,300 - which is great, but we still need more - with our aim being £6,000 by the end of November.

Also worth pointing out that there are some nice 'rewards' that have been donated by local businesses and others to say thank you for your support in this crowdfunding. So there is no better time to show your love for Forest Hill and the local community.

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Posts: 139
Joined: Jan 2016
Post: #3
11-10-2016 04:50 PM

one for Michael....

It's probably a long shot, but might be worth involving local councillors to see if an exemption can be granted to the business rates for a period long enough to cover the setting up of charitable status.

Also (and apologies if this has been posted elsewhere), will FH Library be running a second hand bookshop similar to Crofton Park library? If so, when/how will FH library be taking donations?



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Posts: 822
Joined: Dec 2006
Post: #4
11-10-2016 09:50 PM

My first thought was why would someone want to buy a book from a public library? But at Crofton, the shop specialise in rare and vintage books, so that makes more sense.

I doubt if anyone particularly wants all our unread Jeffrey Archer novels though.

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Posts: 3,261
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #5
11-10-2016 11:15 PM

We are looking into a few different options relating to business rates. We really don't want to be using donations to pass money back to the council for the privilege of running a not for profit library when the council won't.

We need to look further at the idea of selling donated books. It can be a useful source of income, but we don't want to to compromise the main work of the library, which is lending books for free. We have a few different ideas about how to progress this, but at the moment we are more focused on getting the lending library working after 24th October.

And donation have DOUBLED since I posted this morning, thanks particularly to a few very generous donations. Total at £4,600 so far. I'm not going to give a running total every day, but today has been a good day :-)

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Posts: 3,261
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #6
27-11-2016 09:43 PM

The crowdfunding has now reached an incredible £10,000
Thanks to everyone who contributed and has shown how much the local community care about the local library.

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