National Library of Scotland welcomes vision for 21st century
Statement in response to Scottish Executive's Cultural Review
The National Library of Scotland has welcomed the opportunity to help shape how its services will fit into the Cultural Review announced by the Scottish Executive.
Martyn Wade, the National Librarian said: 'This is an excellent opportunity to map out a vision for the provision of all cultural and related services for the people of Scotland for the foreseeable future. It will allow all organisations to have their say and paint a picture of how they envisage providing facilities over the coming decades. We welcome the establishment of the Cultural Commission and look forward to taking part in the Review.'
The National Library of Scotland is one of Scotland's oldest institutions and has already started to put in place changes to the way it is run. Greater access to the Library's wealth of information is at the core of the Library's own strategy for change along with the need to provide excellent service for all users of its research and learning facilities.
The Chairman of the Library Trustees, Professor Michael Anderson said: 'The National Library has developed a strategy to change the way its services are used by the public in Scotland and access and excellence are key to this strategy.
'Web use has increased five fold in recent years and it will be an area we focus on even more in the future. It allows people not just in Scotland but everybody with interests in all things Scottish to access the plethora of information that we store. As well as a knowledge institution dedicated to education and lifelong learning, we support economic development and access to culture.'
The NLS is currently seeking to secure the John Murray Archive for the nation. This multi-million-pound treasure trove of writings would be at the heart of the efforts to encourage greater use of one of the country's great institutions.
Martyn Wade/Michael Anderson are available for further comment on the Cultural Review announced by the Scottish Executive today.
Martyn Wade - Tel: 0131 623 3700
Professor Michael Anderson - Tel: 0131-650 3844.
Notes to Editors on the NLS and John Murray Collection
- The National Library of Scotland is Scotland's largest library, serving both as a general research library and as the world's leading repository for the printed and manuscript record of Scotland's history and culture. It also promotes access to the ideas and cultures of the world. It is funded by the Scottish Executive, and is governed by a Board of Trustees.
- The National Library of Scotland is one of the leading research libraries in Europe. It houses eight million printed items and has been a Legal Deposit library since 1710. Every week it collects more than 4,500 new items.
- The John Murray Archive is a treasure trove of 150,000 items by some of the greatest writers, politicians and scientists of the late 18th to early 20th centuries.
- The Library is currently trying to raise the purchase price of £33 million. It has applied to the Heritage Lottery fund for £22m and must also raise £6.5m itself to match the Scottish Executive's £6.5m.
National Library of Scotland
George IV Bridge
21 April 2004