As libraries close their doors across the UK because of councils being unable to afford them, a new dimension to the Occupy London movement - opening libraries.
The library at Finsbury Square is little more than a couple of shelves and a sofa in a tent, while around the corner at the Bank of Ideas there's a fair amount of shelving, though not much in the way of actual books. But according to the Bank's poet in residence – or maybe that should be "poet in occupation" – Pete the Temp, these are early days.
"There's not much here yet, but we're only just starting," he says, pointing out the "rigorous shelving system" which makes the divide between books and, um, poster paint. The collection is the same kind of hotch-potch as at the St Paul's site with Brand volume six next to Klein's The Politics of the NHS and Eve Ensler's The Vagina Monologues next to Joe Klein's Primary Colors. There aren't enough books yet to live up to the title of James Gleick's Chaos, but it's nice to see a copy of Ben Wilson's What Price Liberty? sitting free and easy on those shelves.
Despite the run-down office decor and woolly-hat temperatures – even on this sunny November afternoon – Pete says the library environment is something of an inspiration. Perched by a window on a reclaimed chair he's been working on a poem: "Now is the winter of our discount tents/ Where people regroup from their TV sets / And start to set out the new news agenda …" Here's hoping the Occupy London libraries won't meet same sorry fate as the library at Zuccotti Park."