Lifelong passion for books is rewarded

A FORMER Guernsey librarian has taken the role of president elect at Libraries Connected, becoming the first from outside England.

Ed Jewell, who has worked in libraries across the Channel Islands, has been named as president elect of the Libraries Council.  (Picture courtesy of Jersey Evening Post)
Ed Jewell, who has worked in libraries across the Channel Islands, has been named as president elect of the Libraries Council. (Picture courtesy of Jersey Evening Post)

Ed Jewell has been chief librarian at Jersey Public Library Service since 2014, but started his career in the Guernsey schools’ library service and has worked in libraries across the Channel Islands for 25 years.

During his 15 years in Guernsey, Mr Jewell worked in a variety of roles such as a children’s librarian and a customer services assistant at the Guille-Alles.

‘I’ve always had a passion for books from a young age,’ he said.

Libraries Connected is an independent charity that supports, promotes and represents all public library services in England, Wales, Northern Ireland, and the Crown Dependencies.

In his new role, Mr Jewell will work on developing leadership programmes, strengthening the charity’s support networks, thinking of new roles in modern library structures and communicating the value of libraries to society.

‘Ed has had a huge impact on the Channel Islands’ libraries and the lives of those who use them. His expertise, experience and vision will be invaluable as we pursue our new strategic plan and libraries respond to the challenges ahead,’ said Libraries Connected president Ayub Khan.

Building on 20 years of experience as the Society of Chief Librarians, the charity runs multiple projects such as partnering with the Rugby League World Cup, providing digital access to a plethora of library resources and setting up death positive libraries where the bereaved are given a space to talk about and process death.

‘Libraries provide a broad array of services to help people in their lives and Libraries Connected helps underpin that,’ said Mr Jewell.

Elected by the Libraries Connected membership, Mr Jewell will serve as president-elect from January 2023 until June 2024, president from June 2024 until June 2026 and past president from June 2026 until June 2027.

‘Now, more than ever, we must be vocal about the transformative impact of our profession and the institutions we lead,’ he said.

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