Year of the Library
Coinciding with the centenary of the People’s Library (Xarxa de Biblioteques Populars de la Mancomunitat de Catalunya) the Government of Catalonia has declared 2015 as the “Year of the Library”. Considered as one of the most emblematic projects of the Commonwealth of Catalonia (Mancomunitat de Catalunya), the People’s Library was not only a symbol of Catalan identity but a central element on which to build the country’s cultural foundations on before the Commonwealth was outlawed by Primo de Rivera’s dictatorship in 1925.
Ferran Mascarell signing the collaborative agreement
Minister of Culture, Ferran Mascarell, signing the collaborative agreement with the Barcelona Provincial Council to strengthen the Public Libraries of Catalonia
The accord to declare 2015 as “Year of the Library” follows last month’s collaborative agreement signed by the Ministry of Culture and the Barcelona Provincial Council to strengthen Catalonia’s public libraries by creating a single “Collective” Catalogue of Public Libraries (which will be available to the public in 2016), by establishing a unified Public library card policy for the whole of Catalonia to facilitate access to libraries across the nation and by offering an unified inter-library grant service which will be available in the second semester of 2015.
In addition to these measures, the Ministry of Culture will extend its support to 160 municipal libraries in accordance to the “inherent” right to use public libraries as is established in Article 26 of the Law on Catalonia’s Library System (Llei del sistema bibliotecari de Catalunya). Of these 160 municipal libraries, 11 are located in municipalities with a population over 5,000 residents, 29 in municipalities with a population of 3,000 to 5,000 residents and up to 120 libraries located in towns with no more than 3,000 residents.