We’ve seen that the first lending library in Colne we know about was privately organised and paid for.
As today, when libraries services are coming under increasing financial pressure, back in 1894 when proposals for the first free public library for Colne library were being considered, people questioned whether it should be the role of the local council to provide one, especially as it would mean an increase in the rates. Nobody seemed to think a library was a bad idea in itself. It was more a case of who should pay – many thought a library would be a great thing……..as long as they didn’t have to chip in for it.
Titus Pickles in his letter to the Nelson and Colne Times was perhaps more extreme than most of the neigh-sayers:
Source: Nelson and Colne Times, 7 Feb 1894