SIR - Allan Friswell is the latest male critic to set out quite deliberately to erode public support for our libraries and to undermine the confidence of volunteers who run them.

It is so easy to do this with misinformation, lack of knowledge and half digested facts (Letters, May 3).

Mr Friswell is right about what he calls, rather extravagantly, "the avalanching national trend". Yes, book borrowing does go down when a library becomes community-run.

Had he sought to enquire further, he would have discovered that in the experience of North Yorkshire County Council professional librarians, largely volunteer-run libraries can take up to 2-3 years to recover their numbers.

It is not wise, however, to assume that being mainly volunteer-run is the sole cause of a library's decline.

There are now all sorts of ways to acquire books and reading material. I've noticed an increase in the number of library members who own tablets and who are asking about how to download and borrow free e-books, of which there are a growing number in the NYCC's library system.

E-book readers do not need to come to the library, are not part of the door count and their books are not checked by the library's normal computer system.

Mr Friswell's remarks about book groups are quite astonishing. I'm in overall charge of the now 11 Book Groups supplied by books from Settle library.

His remark that I should regard myself as" a relatively untrained middle man" (woman?) is rather intriguing. What does he mean?

I'm not the only retired graduate teacher of English literature amongst the Settle library volunteers. There are also several retired librarians as well as knowledgeable and well-read volunteers from various professions, businesses and trades.

Mr Friswell's suggestion that our book groups should "liaise with a couple of trained librarians in the main libraries" is both condescending and laughable.

If he would care to come along to Settle library when I am on duty I shall do my best to see he is better informed.

I'm sorry I did not mention in my previous letter all the activities in which our community library is engaged, but how long should a letter be?

Coming soon is the children's Reading Challenge, talks from local authors and poets are in the process of being organised.

In Mr Friswell's view, the volunteers ought to be doing cataloguing and organising of local history records.

Most small branch libraries have never had the space or the staff to do that properly even when they were professionally run.

In Settle, we have the Folly museum which does the job brilliantly.

However, it so happens, in Settle library at the moment there is a local history exhibition. Perhaps if Mr Friswell can't make that, he might like to come to the third series of talks I'm giving, this time, on Historical Fiction, in the lounge (next to the library), at Limestone View Residential Home at 9.30am, Tuesday mornings, July 3rd, 10th and 17th. Admission is free, but donations can be offered for Settle Community library. All, critics and supporters alike, are very welcome.

Kathleen Kinder (Mrs), (member of the management committee, Settle Community library), Northfields Avenue, Settle