Julie – Age 51

“Books are obviously still very important but it’s people that count. Everybody is going to get older, the alternative is worse, so you have to embrace it and keep active and keep doing things for as long as you possibly can.”

I live in Portslade and I’ve lived in Brighton and Hove since 1987 when I came to study at Brighton Polytechnic. My favourite part of the job is new projects and initiatives. We’ve done some really interesting initiatives such as BBO Therapy which is using books to help people with mental health to have positive well being. I like new things. Libraries are usually often full of incidents, and one of the beauties of the library service is that anyone can come in so every day there is different interesting things happening.

We had some boys come in one day who were trying to do a candid camera thing – they were trying to iron the customers which didn’t go down too well. One of them was foolishly wearing their school uniform so we were able to take action. I think libraries still have an old fashioned view in the media which is very erroneous. Young people should think that libraries are very forward looking. We’re one of the only services that was funded to put in IT by the government that was completed to budget and on time. We do a lot of things around digital and new media. Books are obviously still very important but it’s the people that count, working with lots of different people, helping people to be able to enhance their lives is a really rewarding thing to do.

I don’t have a lot of spare time but I do read of course. I love walking, the countryside, South Downs, I go swimming and play badminton, quite active really, oh and a bit of Facebook too. My son attends the bi-lingual primary school, I’m interested in languages so I try to keep my French and Spanish reasonable. Fiftyis the new thirty, that’s what I like to say. These days I don’t really consider anyone old, until they’re over seventy at least. People are much healthier now and have a lot of experience and energy. Everybody is going to get older, the alternative is worse, so you have to embrace it and keep as active and keep doing things for as long as you possibly can.