Whanganui Midweek

Rotary starts up new book exchange

Free reading books available


Free book exchanges have popped up in towns and cities across New Zealand. One in New Plymouth, outside the person’s house, even had a light that came on at night. There’s a “Book Stop” at a bus stop in Cornfoot St, Castleclif­f.

Now, the Whanganui Rotary Club, well known for its annual (sometimes twice a year) book fairs, decided to put up its own free book exchange, starting it off with books from the fair.

The Men’s Shed took up the challenge to build it. It has two shelves protected by Perspex and a lower shelf which could be used by people to donate fruit and vegetables. The club is grateful to the Men’s Shed.

The exchange is painted in Rotary colours (more or less) and as it could be the first of more book exchanges the club wanted it sited close enough to some members’ homes, preferably under a veranda, and where people would come and go.

The answer was outside St Johns Pharmacy in the St Johns shopping centre. It was perhaps fortunate that Sue Gardner, the pharmacist, is also a member of Rotary — Rotary North — and she was supportive. There was the ideal spot, under cover and out of the way of anyone walking past.

Last Tuesday Sue Gardner cut the ribbon and opened the exchange door to show the two shelves full of books. As appropriat­e to a launch, gathered Rotarians stayed to wish the exchange well with a drop of merlot.

People are welcome to take a book or two and/or bring a book or two for someone else to take, read and enjoy. There is no cost or commitment. Rotary members will stock it up if required. If the free book exchange proves successful, the club plans to set up more in other suburbs.

 ?? ?? Rotarian Kate Smith with the book exchange.
Rotarian Kate Smith with the book exchange.

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