New Web Page

March 29, 2016

Please note that from March 2016 FoTL will no longer be posting here.

To view our new web pages click on this link

While you are here Dear Friend of Torquay Library, a quick note,

This is to inform you that the Annual General Meeting of FoTL is to be held at Torquay Library on April 27th, starting a 7pm. I have listed the Agenda below.


Minutes of Last AGM

Report from Jo Gale, Library Manager

Report from the Treasurer

Report from Membership Secretary

Proposed changes to the Constitution

A request for Committee Members and other Officers

Any Other Business

Date of next AGM

Details of the changes to the Constitution are on view on the FoTL notice board and also available online at “”.

If you are not online or don’t have a computer, don’t forget you can make use of a Library computer for up to one hour per day on production of your Library card.

I will be in the Library each Wednesday and Friday between 10:00 and 3:15 to assist anyone who is unfamiliar with computers.

After the business of the evening has concluded there will be an interesting and entertaining Talk by A Trio of Mature Ladies on, “Fascinating Ladies of Devon,” .

Tea and coffee will also be available.

David C Banks

Membership Secretary





friendstorquaylibrary.blogspot is the place to be

March 15, 2016

Spring Meeting of Friends of Torquay Library

April 28, 2014

On Thursday 23rd April, The Friends of Torquay library held their Spring meeting and AGM.  The meeting began with Chairperson Jack Critchlow’s opening sentance “Save the libraries for 49p per week”. He highlighted the shameful attack on local library services and was bound to see a reduction in staff and opening hours, saying that 2% increase in council tax would generate the million pounds needed for council spending. He thanked all library staff for their unstinting efforts in keeping standards up in difficult times. The group have funded Children’s Literacy and poetry prizes and sponsored various clubs i.e. film, local history and hosted talks, quizzes and coffee mornings.

The AGM was followed by a delightful Illustrated talk “Story of Remembrance” by Mike Thompson. He has visited many War cemeteries in France and Britain to commemorate battles at amongst others Oppy Wood, Pachendale, Ypres, Somme.

He told us about his visit to Wotton Bassett where our soldiers were repatriated from Afghanistan and were saluted by colleagues and thousands of visitors paying tribute to their heroes. The town was made a royal borough to recognise their efforts.

The governments of the day decided that there would be “no bringing back of the bodies” from the wars so the war graves commission set up the commemorative cemeteries in France. In some cemeteries there are Stones of Remembrance designed by Edward Lutyens who incidentally designed The Drum at Cockington.

Mike searched out the war graves of The Devonshire regiment which were built on the trenches of their battle. He also searched out local Torquay family names, Palk, Cary, Haldon and Malloch. Of course there were not only war graves but memorials for Police, Fire, Women’s Institute, and ATS.

Of course this being the Centenary of World War I this was a lovely tribute to our troops who fought and died so that we can have our freedom today.   All at the meeting echoed their thanks for the photos and interesting facts uncovered by Mike Thompson.

Glenise Phillips

Friends of Torquay Library AGM 2014

March 27, 2014

All members welcome
Torquay Library
Wednesday April 23rd at 7.00pm
£2.00 for non members  ‐ or join on the night for only £5 per year!
Followed by:

The Story of  Remembrance
An illustrated talk by  Mike Thompson


Torquay United comes to Torquay Library

February 27, 2014

Recently Friends of Torquay Library held a talk by Andrew Candy Chief Executive Officer of Torquay United Football club. On Thursday 20th February he kindly came along to give us a talk on how The Club integrates into the community of Torquay. Jack Critchlow, Chairperson of The Friends of Torquay Library opened the event using the following facts. Modern Torquay is but 200 years old. However, Torquay United Football club and Torquay Library are two of the oldest institutions in the town and many of the football supporters are members of the library. Torquay United was founded in May 1899 at Torre Abbey Public House and the Pub is still in existence. Whereas Torquay Library was founded in April 1906 and sited in the front of the town hall at Castle Circus and is still in existence next to the town hall in the council hub.

The club kindly donated two tickets to a match at Plainmoor and a fantastic signed poster as raffle prizes on the afternoon. Each fan who attended the talk was also given a club programme to take away.
Mr Candy began by asking the audience who had attended a recent game at Plainmoor and was very impressed to note that all the audience had indeed enjoyed a recent game. He went on to explain how he progressed from fan to CEO. He was born in Torquay and a true fan of the club. He has a background in Human Resources with various councils. He moved away from the town with work, but returned to Torquay and volunteered in many roles before gaining a position as general manager. This in due course, with his administrative background, lead to him becoming the Chief Executive Officer (his dream job).

Although he touched on the fact that the club was run as a business, albeit small Mr. Candy as CEO overseas many roles. For example, staff management, media coverage, maintenance, grounds man, finance and many more roles involved in running a football club. He explained that they also participate in social media formats to inform their fans about changes to games and tickets etc. Andrew went on to explain that they are very proud of their facilities at the club and do their upmost to use their clubhouse in a variety of innovative ways, not least to appeal to 6th form pupils of Westland’s school with a lunch club which is very popular. Torquay United Football clubs board of directors are made up of local professional people and are committed to helping promote the club within the community. The club arrange coaching in schools and half term football events for the young persons of Torquay.

Mr Candy reiterated that both Torquay United Football Club and Torquay Library have incredibly enthusiastic staff and both play an important part in the community. Despite falling numbers and struggling with their finances (he finished his very entertaining talk by using the quote) “We are still here”. Do please support these two pillars of the community as they are as precious as gold to the town.
Jack Critchlow then hosted a Q & A session and Andrew Candy was thanked for such an interesting and informative talk.

Andrew Candy, TUFC, at Torquay Library

February 14, 2014

FOTL Andrew Candy

Tell all your friends who support Torquay United Football Club that we have a special guest coming to talk about our local team. Chief Executive of Torquay United, Andrew Candy, will be at Torquay Library next Thursday 20th February, 14.00 for 14.30. The talk will be free to members and £2.00 for non-members, but we’re also offering free entry to all school and college pupils so it’s ideal as a half term treat. PLUS, everyone who comes gets free entry into a prize draw for tickets to a home match!

Library funding

November 26, 2013

All library users across Torbay will be utterly appalled at the prospect of Library Services suffering a cutback of £365,000 over two years in the council’s budget for 20014/15, as this draconian measure will obviously impact on staffing levels, opening hours and replenishment of stock, coming, as it does, on top of two consecutive years of cuts, adding up to a massive ‘hit’ of over half million pounds. FOTL will fight these measures all the way but we will need help from everyone who cares about libraries and their unique value to the community. With this in mind we would appreciate it if as many members of the public could make their feelings on the situation felt and register their opposition to Mayor Oliver’s intentions by contacting him and/or local councillors. Failure to respond to these proposals will only make it easier for them to be voted through ; the mayor and Torbay’s councillors need to be made fully aware of our feelings on the matter and respond accordingly by withdrawing these unfair cutbacks from the budget.

Jack Critchlow
Chairman, FOTL