Macandrew Bay is on the Otago Peninsula near Dunedin, New Zealand and we drove there on 18 January to check out a long-standing community library that’s independent of the Dunedin City Library system. I’d seen some information about it on the Dunedin Library noticeboard and having read that it’d been established in 1878 I was keen to find out more. It’s open very limited hours but happily we could fit in a visit on the Friday afternoon before leaving for home.
All photos taken by Nigel except the pohutukawa photo taken by Liz
Macandrew Bay Library
Open Wed 5.30 – 7.30pm, Friday 2.30 – 4.30pm, and one Sunday a month
We parked right opposite the library and the open sign was out.
There were a few red blooms on the pohutukawa tree. Otago Harbour.
The library takes up part of this building.
We were made very welcome by the librarian, Anne Pentecost.
Nice cheerful, colourful space. Lots of books that looked interesting.. in fact, I found a beautifully illustrated book that I wanted to borrow so I asked if I could join the library! That was cheeky given that we live in Gore but after being asked a few questions it was decided that we could join. I paid $5, my membership was recorded and I was able to borrow the book – awesome!
Here’s some of the history behind the library. Click on the photo to enlarge
There’s a very special feeling about a library that solely exists to serve the local community and isn’t tied to the city library system. It can be tailored exclusively to the needs of local residents and couldn’t be more handy for locals to access!
Text by Liz, photos by Nigel and Liz; Exploring Colour (2019)
Sounds great to have a library that really caters to local needs. We had an excellent little library, with lots of community involvement where we lived near Edinburgh. But funding for it got cut back a lot and it became a lot less interesting. (Library funding is a big problem here now.)
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Most libraries in NZ are funded by the District or City Councils. Every so often they have the bright idea of cutting the library funding – its like stirring a hornet’s nest. Libraries are really well supported here and every time it happens, it infuriates the ratepayers. I think that most times the Councils back off.
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