The story of a little street library – Chaux – Territoire de Belfort

I have like many people many books on my shelves some I care about some I can part with. They’re hard to throw away so why not share them?

For years I had been dreaming of a small street library in my village and it was during a neighbourhood meeting that I proposed my project.

The enthusiasm of the citizens present during this meeting allowed me to get down to work. And I thank them as well as our mayor André Piccinelli and his municipal team . I also thank Mr. Richard for giving me the basic support, Bernard Bardot for the birch branches that allowed me to dress the library.

We would like to thank Denise for this very special gift.
This wonderful achievement will, no doubt, make children and adults happy.

The base


Step 1 : sand the entire structure of the bookcase

Step 2 :  dye and varnish

Step 3: replace the legs of the bookcase with cut-to-size logs

Step 4 : Create the pediments to support the framework

Step 5 : cut notches in the pediments, install the structural battens, equalize

Step 6 : replace the broken windows with plexiglass and staple the wire mesh in place

Step 7 : cut birch branches into slices and glue them with silicone on the sides of the bookcase. Also decorate the front facade.

Step 8 : make the roof mantling, screw them to the pediments, lay the tiles

Step 9 : proceed to the finishing touches: text transfer, acrylic paint, etc… And that’s it!

Installed under the big fir tree, located on the parking lot between the church and the bakery in the center of Chaux, my little library looks great! Filled with books for adults and children, it is, since its installation in October 2019, visited daily. Everyone finds what they are looking for and deposits other books… a success that I am delighted with!

The shared library

Denise Crolle -Terzaghi, who has already offered us last October (on the ARTE channel) some very nice programs on her “animal bestiary”, worked with her husband to provide us a beautiful shared library free of charge. It is installed at the foot of the big tree on the way to school.

Here’s its story, told by Denise:
“The piece of furniture was given to me by Monsieur Richard, owner of the building where there was a flea market and the branches that I cut into slices, by Bernard
Bardot who lives on Main Street.
I imagined this style of small house as soon as I found the furniture. I wanted the library to be in keeping with our village, in this environment at the foot of the mountains and I felt that placing it under the the fir tree was ideal. In addition, it is safe from bad weather.

The transformation took me 18 full days.
My husband helped me with the framing and the cutting of the feet. I’ve already filled it with books I had in stock, others that I have retrieved from the attic of the communal hall and which date from the time of the library installed at the town hall by Monsieur Chassignet, former mayor.
I’ve also got some books from the Bar Atteint in Belfort and 2 boxes of recent children’s books donated by the Belfort public library. Inhabitants only have to help themselves and drop off other books.

The operating instructions are pinned on both sides of the the library. The goal is to make the books pass from person to person, so that everyone can take them, drop them off, keep them or put them back for others to take advantage of them or add some new books.
It’s a shared library for everyone.
I’m going to take care of it. I pass there by every day on my way to the bakery. That allows me to have a look at the books, make some order, look at what’s been added and sort some books if necessary. I will regularly add new books.
You can encourage the population of Chaux to use this street library.
To keep it attractive, I’m thinking about organising events around books when the weather is fine, for example reading tales in the children’s playground or perhaps collaborate with the publisher of children’s books in Sermamagny… and of course any idea is welcome.
If people in Chaux have special wishes regarding events around the book we will be able to make this nice little spot under the tree have its own life. When people will have discovered it I do hope that some of them will appreciate it.

We would like to thank Denise for this very special gift.
This wonderful achievement will, no doubt, make children and adults happy.


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