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Please Support the Library!

Want to support the library during lockdown and when we re-open?

Play Brent’s Community Lottery and get the chance to win £25,000 every week – and help Kensal Rise Library.

FKRL twitter Brent lottery Jan 2019Dear Friends,

We sincerely hope you and your loved ones are well.

Have you heard of the fun way you can support the library remotely –

helping us to re-open after lockdown and making sure we can stay open?

You could win up to £25,000 in the Brent Community Lottery, while

supporting a worthwhile cause – Kensal Rise Library!

You can play for as little as £1 a week – and help towards the library’s bills of £100 a day. We have to keep paying the bills, even while we’re shut.

How does it work?

You can play for as little as £1 per week (£4.34 a month). 50p of every £1 you play is guaranteed to go straight to Kensal Rise Library and support our work. 10p goes to all Brent good causes (including us).  The remaining 40p will be used to provide prizes and cover administration costs. For just £1 per week you will be allocated or can choose a Brent Lottery number, which will remain yours for as long as you wish to keep playing. You can purchase more than one number if you wish. Every Saturday at 8pm, the lucky winners are selected at random and prize cheques posted directly to you, so there is no need for you to claim.

You must be 16 or over to enter.

To support the library, please visit our Lottery page:

Every ticket you buy makes our community stronger, even when we’re apart.

Thank you!

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FKRL Logo Jan 2020 (2)

From Wednesday 18 March, Kensal Rise Community Library is closing temporarily due to Covid-19.

The safety of our users, volunteers, staff – and wider community – is of the utmost importance.

We will continue to keep in touch via updates on our social media platforms:

Facebook: Save Kensal Rise Library!

Twitter: @KensalRLibrary

We regret the disruption and thank you for your understanding during this crisis.

We hope to play a role in the local initiatives that are emerging.

Margaret Bailey: Chair, Friends of Kensal Rise Library

Stephanie Schonfield: Library Manager



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Trustees Information Evening

Your Library needs New Trustees!                                      FKRL Logo Jan 2020 (2)

Information Evening
7.30pm Thursday 12 March 2020
Kensal Rise Library

We are looking for these skills/qualities:
· Good people skills (e.g. team working, problem solving)
· Knowledge of, and commitment to, the local community
· IT, Finance, Libraries, Communications, Safeguarding, HR
· Fundraising experience or connections with potential funders
· A Secretary to the Board

The commitment comprises attendance at 4 Trustees meetings a year, and from time to time a willingness to be hands on with
activities to do with the operation of the library.
This is a great opportunity to help a local popular cause with a proven track record.

Friends of Kensal Rise Library is the registered charity with educational purposes set up to save the library when it was closed by the council in 2011.
The Trustees share responsibility for governing the charity, deciding strategy and its overall operation.
For more information or an informal discussion please contact:
Margaret Bailey, Chair of FKRL,
or come to our information evening.
For more information about being a Trustee:

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Brent Community Lottery

Top Prize £25,000!

Support the library!

 Brent Community Lottery draw every Saturday at 8pm.

Win prizes up to £25,000!

Buy tickets from only £1 per week. 50% of sales go the library and 10% to other good causes in Brent. Help us reach our target.

Brent Community Lottery For Kensal Rise Library

Our Library and community space provide a much loved and valued service for everyone in the community. We all own it!

We depend on donations to keep going.

We need your help so we can continue to offer and even expand our services!

Thank you for your support and good luck!

FKRL twitter Brent lottery Jan 2019

Margaret Bailey

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Opening Hours For the Holidays

We are closed from 1pm on Saturday 21 December 2019.

We will re-open on Friday January 3 at 10am.

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas & a Happy New Year!


FKRL Libray in sun Jan 2019We are in the process of designing a new website – should be coming in the new year.

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Grand Opening Kensal Rise Library!

Saturday 28 September 2pm.

Join Us!

FKRL Libray in sun Jan 2019

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When will the library open? We are working towards opening as a fully functioning lending library in the autumn and plan to announce the date in the next library newsletter. We are already open for events, classes, and councillors’ surgeries on the first Saturday of each month, 11am to 12 noon.

Volunteer training day: We will be running volunteer training on Tuesday 10th September 2019 for everyone who wants to volunteer in the library once it is open. Training will be 10am to 12 noon and 7pm to 9pm at the library. You only need to attend one session. Please email us at to sign up. If you can’t make that date please get in touch anyway. Regular commitments are weekly or fortnightly for a four hour shift but we do need ad hoc volunteers as well.

Author Talks: We have had two very successful author events in the last month: Antonia Fraser and Alyisha Malik both gave very interesting (and quite different) talks.

FKRL Antonia Fraser Jun 2019

FKRL Ayisha Malik Jun 2019

Antonia Fraser & Ayisha Malik

Our next author event is James Swallow on Saturday 21st September at 3pm at the library. Please come along.

Getting involved: if you want to help with everything that needs doing to open our library, please come along to the next Operations Group meetings which are at 7.30pm at the library on Thursday 15th August, Thursday 29th August (extra meeting) and Thursday 12th September 2019, or email us to offer help. We are currently cataloguing books, checking policies, preparing volunteer training, setting up IT, working on the library website, and planning for our opening weekend.

Donate to the library when you shop online! Please click through and nominate us as your chosen charity. Most big retailers and lots of small ones will make a donation to us when you shop online, and if you do so regularly it adds up to a lot of money for us.

We are looking for new trustees for the Friends, the charity that runs the library. We particularly need more trustees with skills in IT, and finance. If you are interested please contact Margaret Bailey, chair of trustees, via

Who owns the library and how is it funded? The Friends of Kensal Rise Library run the library and have a 999 year rent free lease of the library space, so long as it remains a library. Our immediate landlord is All Souls College, Oxford, who originally gave the land for the library in around 1900. There are residential long leaseholders in other parts of the building. The library is funded by grants and community fundraising. It will cost about £100 per day to keep the doors open.

Why did the library close? The library was formerly run by Brent Council and was closed by them in 2011 despite overwhelming opposition, locally and beyond. In recent years Brent Council’s Library Service have been supporting us with training and advice. We have received some grants from the council though we do not receive any regular or guaranteed public funding.

Friends of Kensal Rise Library, registered charity no. 1141606

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Maggie Gee talks ‘Blood’ – 3pm April 13

Join distinguished, award-winning author Maggie Gee in a discussion of her new novel, “Blood”. 

13th April 3pm at Kensal Rise Library.

Tickets £4 on Eventbrite: and at C&D Food & Wine College Rd NW10.

“…violent, sardonic, funny and fierce … written with style and dash, without pity, without fear.” Hilary Mantel

Audience Q&A, book signing, refreshments.

FKRL Maggie Gee website Apr 2019

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FKRL Low key event 1 July June 18 024SATURDAY, JULY 1st 12 – 3pm!
You  are invited to see inside before the refurbishment works begin. Come and tell us what you think.

Refreshments and new merchandise available too.



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  Hi Everyone,

  1. Fundraising Phase 1: thanks to your generosity, the success of two of our grant applications, The Foyle Foundation and Garfield Weston, a Brent Council Ward Working award, and our events, we have achieved our goal of £80,000 for the fit out of the library – flooring, wiring, electrics, plumbing, heating etc. It has been hard work but very heartening to have so much support.
  2. Fundraising Phase 2: we now need £80,000 to kit out the library – desks, computers, lighting, storage, wifi, furniture, etc.

    We have raised £3,863 so far, thank you!

    Every contribution, no matter how small, has helped and we are on our way to creating a library and public space.

    If you have not donated, and would like to, please visit our website: and press the Mydonate button or go direct to:


  3. Our fit out works are due to commence soon. Handover day from the owner, Uplift Property Ltd, is 21st October. There have been many delays but they have given us a chance to get the funding we need to commence the refurbishment works. The space will be left as a very basic shell and we have to start from scratch to make it, not only beautiful and practical, but safe for public use. We hope to begin using the ‘meanwhile’ space for fundraising and events while we raise the finance we need to complete the works.


  4. Events:

    For our third Annual Mark Twain Lecture we have author Ali Smith, author of Public Libraries and Other Stories, (Kensal Rise Library gets a mention) and winner of the Bailey’s Prize for Literature in 2015 for her book, How to be Both.

    This lecture will take place at 7pm in St Martin’s Church, Mortimer Rd, Kensal Green on Sunday 6Nov.

    Tickets are available from Eventbrite: …

    Tickets, £10, also available locally at: Daniels Real Estate, 77 Chamberlayne Rd, NW10, and Queens Park Books NW6.

    We have other events planned for autumn. We will let you know details when they are finalised. Other events we are lining up include a Comedy Night, and a Music celebration for Christmas and we hope to continue with our Cake Sales outside the library. We may be holding our first ever event in the library too if our building works go to plan.


  5. If you would like to volunteer to help in the library, especially if you have financial, IT, website or marketing expertise, please come along to our next monthly meeting. We have three committees, Finance, Operations and Communications, which meet on the first Thursday of each month in The Long Room behind St Martin’s Church in Mortimer Rd, Kensal Green, NW10 The next meeting is at 7.30pm on 6 October.

    All skills and enthusiasm welcomed. For more information about how you can help email:


    December 2016 marks the sixth year of our campaign to restore the library. We have always been able to rely on the support of the community and those beyond. We have come a long way and it is gratifying to hear that the Leader of Brent Council, Cllr Muhammad Butt, at the September Cabinet meeting announced plans to formulate a strategy to work in partnership with all the Community Libraries in Brent. That is a dramatic change and we are looking forward to working in partnership with the council for the benefit of our community.

    For the moment, we are planning the design and refurbishment of the library space and continuing to raise the necessary funds to accomplish this. We have a tall order to fill – but with your continued support we will get there.



    Margaret Bailey


    Friends of Kensal Rise Library






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