Debating Matters showcase debate on libraries
Sunday 28 October, 12.45pm until 1.45pm, Lecture Theatre 2 Lunchtime Debates

Involving sixth form students from two schools experienced in the Academy of Ideas and Pfizer Debating Matters Competition, the debate will showcase its innovative format with a debate on the future of libraries.

Debate motion:
‘Books should remain the essence of public libraries’

-Blackburn College, Lancashire
-Queens’ School, Bushey, Hertfordshire


Nicolette Jones
writer, critic and broadcaster; children's book reviewer, The Sunday Times; author, The Plimsoll Sensation
Miranda McKearney
director, Reading Agency
Diran Adebayo
novelist and cultural critic; author, award-winning Some Kind of Black and My Once Upon A Time
Helen Birtwistle
history and politics teacher, South London school

 Produced by

Helen Birtwistle history and politics teacher, South London school
Geoff Kidder director, membership and events, Academy of Ideas; convenor, IoI Book Club; IoI’s resident expert in all sporting matters

"Books should remain the essence of public libraries", Andrew Wheelhouse vs. Kiranjeet Kaur Gill

 Recommended readings

A treasure house for Moomins, Biggles and well-thumbed pages
'So libraries of every sort are treasure houses. I love them, I cherish them, I use them all the time, I could not bear to live in a society without them.'
Philip Pullman, The Times, 2 January 2006

The personal library - now there's an idea
The public lending library, another great Victorian institution, has had its day.
Helen Rumbelow, The Times, 9 February 2006

Who is going to save our libraries? The silence is deafening...
In 1866 the social reformer George Dawson noted that 'a great library contains the diary of the human race.' This is not a statement on which I am able to improve.
Rachel Cooke, Observer, 5 November 2006

Debating Matters, Votes at 16? and The 'networking generation'
Watch Claire Fox News debate three issues connected with youth.
Claire Fox News, 18 Doughty Street TV, 9 July 2007

Libraries begin uncertain new chapter
'Plans for new virtual libraries provide the public with the opportunity to debate, join dialogue, to disagree... it's a place of debate and democracy'
Chris Alden, , 1 October 2007

recommended by spiked

The virtual library
Sandy Starr, 22 September 2005

The decline of the public library
Philip Pettifor, 1 September 2005

Session partners

in association with