In September 2013, the new Library of Birmingham will open to the public, and the old site is now scheduled for demolition, despite hopes to keep it open for other uses. At the time of writing, the current site is operating on a skeleton service on Floor 1, however, last year, on December 21st 2012, Floor 3 would be shut off from the public for good. Floor 3 housed a study area, a music library and books on subjects such as arts and literature and architecture. For a long time, Floor 3 would be a place that I held dear – the gateway to the floors above, for me, where the real library started, with its desks complete with their own lighting, mottled carpets and plastic chairs. On November 28th 2012 I went onto Floor 3 for what would be the final time. The following piece of writing is my eulogy for the library, using elements and excerpts from my three current works in progress – an examination on Birmingham’s changing cityscape (The Wind) using tangents of talking about music (The Prodigal Songs) and the ways in which broadcast nostalgia and corporate identities affect my thought processes and alters my memories (Pamphleteering for Ceefax.)
NB – I have decided in this piece to make Birmingham Central Library masculine. My apologies for any offence this may cause.
Unfortunately I rushed taking the pictures on the day, but for far better photos – go to The Reference Works website, a project undertaken by four leading photographers in response to the old and new sites.