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National award for librarian Tom

28 September 2016

A man and two women holding awards.
 An Essex mobile librarian has received a national award for his work supporting the local community in Harlow.

Tom Colloff, a supervisor with Essex Libraries, received the 'Mobile Library Champion of the Year' award for helping deliver a mobile service across hard to reach parts of the town.

In giving the award, the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) the national trade body for libraries across the UK, made special mention of his ability to build relationships with local communities, and in particular his work with the local women’s refuge.

Tom, who has worked for Essex Libraries for 11 years following a career in the navy, picked up the award at an event in London. He said: "I feel extremely gratified and somewhat humbled to receive the award, it was totally unexpected and how some of my colleagues managed to keep it from me is a mystery.

"I consider myself very fortunate to be a part of two such great teams at Harlow and in the Mobile Library Service and to have the support of so many wonderful customers around the county."

Cllr Anne Brown, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Libraries at Essex County Council added: "This is the third year in a row that Essex Library employees have won this award and this is a testament to the fantastic job that our teams do.

"Mobile libraries are uniquely placed to offer a bespoke and personal library service for those who are, for whatever reason, disconnected from community centres. However, they are only as good as the people who deliver the service, and in Tom we have someone who embodies excellence – the ability to adapt and tailor the service to meet the needs of different communities, the dedication to become a part of the Harlow community, and the deep understanding that for some the mobile library is a lifeline."