Back on the barge

Last November I took part in a Book Week Scotland reading event on a barge. It was so successful that we decided to do it again in the warmer (we hoped!) month of June. This time around we were celebrating National Reading Group Day and what better way to do so than invite our reading groups for some tea, cake and reading on the canal!


The event was fully booked once again, with over 40 people on the boat. Our journey was facilitated by the lovely folk at Forth and Clyde Canal Society. This time we sailed from The Stables Inn near Kirkintilloch, up to Bishopbriggs Leisure Centre and finished back at The Stables, where everyone then went for lunch. It was lovely to read on the barge in a different season; we admired the greenery, waved to passers by and even caught a glimpse of a heron.

Barge June 2
My colleague Sarah reading from To Kill a Mockingbird. She chose the chapter in which Atticus shoots the rabid dog.


We stuck to the Reading Groups Day theme by reading excerpts from Reading Group books that were popular in 2015: Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, The Blackhouse by Peter May and Wake by Anna Hope.

RGC front cover
A new interactive digital Reading Group Collection brochure


To further commemorate National Reading Groups Day, we launched our new Reading Group Collection brochure. This was one of my chartership objectives, so it was really rewarding to see reading group members excited about this new resource. Previous Reading Group Collection leaflets were very basic, with only the author and title listed. The new and improved brochure now includes the book cover and a synopsis, allowing for more informed selection! The online version is also interactive, users can click on a title and be directed to the OPAC to request copies for their group. I’d recommend doing this if you have a similar list, it’s an easy but effective way to improve accessibility to a collection.


Taking library events out of the library – for me – is such a refreshing way of showcasing the work that we do, and keeping things interesting. We need to be visible outside our libraries, and this is a great (and fun!) way of doing that.

Barge June 1


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