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Reduce; don't grow

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Page 6 of 12

To put these comical comments in context, we could take a quick peek at the interesting history of public libraries. In 367 BCE (hint: that's a long time ago), the great Library of Alexandria was initiated by a generously-funded royal mandate (hint: that means tax dollars).

More locally and recently, the industrialist-turned-philanthropist Andrew Carnegie swept North America on a mission that would benefit millions. Between 1900 and 1917 he built almost 1,700 libraries across North America in exchange for guarantees by local governments that they would be run by tax dollars. His initiative included the construction of the original Vancouver Public Library in 1901.

Who doesn't know that almost every town and city across North America has an institution that is different than a charity or a bookstore, where you can access information without a fee, and which is impartial and publicly funded? If this really is shocking and new information to anyone who is old enough to be reading this newspaper, I would suggest making a beeline to find some information about it at your local public library.

Sally Reid

Whistler

 

Travel delays and repercussions

With reference to the article "London snow affecting Whistler travel" ( Pique , Dec. 23), as someone affected by the recent disruption of travel from London Heathrow I would like to make a few observations.

Firstly, the disruption for us started on Dec. 17 after a mere one centimetre of snow. Our flight was cancelled because the plane could not be de-iced before the crew ran out of flight time. This affected a large number of other flights as well. Cause: insufficient de-icing capacity, although pretty much all flights within the U.K. were cancelled due to severe weather in other parts of the country.

All B.A. flights were then cancelled on Dec. 18, even before the snow fell, because the airport could not cope with the luggage left from the day before.

We were very fortunate to be able to rebook and finally arrived in Vancouver on the 21st. Only to have two bags go missing - we had not seen our luggage since it was checked in for the flight on the 17th.

Many people have been unable to re-book flights until after the Christmas period. This includes those who would normally be travelling from other airports in Scotland, Ireland and other parts of the UK We are lucky enough to own a property in Whistler and my husband has had four friends staying with him. All have had severe difficulties returning back to the UK. One was only able to get a flight back today, Christmas Eve, when he should have left on Saturday the 18th.