Quite a sudden goodbye was forced upon some White Rock-readers early last week when a Little Neighbourhood Library was swiped from its post.
On the morning of Sunday, Aug. 28, Barbara Carter, a White Rock resident who installed the little library, went to the spot where the cabinet of books had been sitting to find it was missing. The library had been in the same spot — at the corner of Pacific Avenue and Stevens Street — since the beginning of the summer.
The response from the community was largely “shocked and upset that anyone would steal something like that, of little material value but meaningful and useful to the community,” Carter wrote to Peace Arch News.
Many communities have mini-libraries, which are usually a small cabinet posted outdoors, with books stacked inside. The idea is for people to pop in a book they may not want or need anymore and then take one from the selection to become the new owner of a used book. This way, books do not get left untouched on dusty shelves for years.
“The cabinet was full of books and clearly marked on all sides as a neighbourhood library. It had been well-used by adults and children throughout the summer,” Carter said.
“I realize this is not the crime of the century, but this loss has saddened and frustrated many people in my community. Why would anybody act in such a callous way?”
A neighbour allegedly saw a U-Haul truck stop in front of the library and take it around 8:30 a.m. that morning, Carter said. The truck appeared to have a mural on the side of it.
Inside the truck was a woman and man, a witness told Carter, and appeared to be taking items from other properties throughout the city.
White Rock RCMP responded to the report, but have no leads at this time. CCTV footage was also not available for their investigation.
The cabinet is black, from IKEA and has shelves inside. The library had a range of genres of books suitable for all ages. Inside the cabinet-door read ‘Take One, Leave One.’
“I guess these two perps read: Take All, Leave Nothing,” Carter said.
A new communal mini-library has already been installed as a replacement in the general area.