REPERCUSSIONS of the Margate Conference will be felt for some time to come. There is still the suggestion that one or the other side won in the debate on central control, for example, but we would suggest that it was an occasion when a case was stated and combatted and that the result was the only wise one that is to say, both parties agreed that the Council should consider the matter. It would be in the highest degree dangerous if at any open meeting of over 1,000 members of the Library Association any policy, then for the first time outlined, should be adopted as a settled rule of life. Such questions as central control have to be considered in all their bearings, and admirable as was the case Colonel Mitchell made for it, and forceful as was Mr. Berwick Sayers's rejoinder, they would not be regarded as final statements, even by themselves. There were some murmurings at the swift close of the debate, and there were more than murmurings that so important a matter should arise without due notice. These are not quite reasonable, and no one could have handled the meeting more quietly and impartially than the President Mr. Savage did. That no notice was given of the debate is hardly true although the words of the motion proposed by Colonel Mitchell were not known until the debate began but the intention of the debate was to elicit opinions which might help the council in framing a policy there was no intention to reach a decision or to publish the results of the meeting. A considered report, twelve months hence, on the deliberations of the L.A. Council on the matter should be far better than any account of the vapourings at Margate.
New Library World – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jul 1, 1936
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