The American Library is a working library, a war memorial, and a living cultural exchange between two nations. The trustees were keen to appeal to a wider, younger audience, whilst still catering for military history enthusiasts and US veterans’ families. The broader subject of American culture also needed to be explored to better reflect the book collection.
We put people at the heart of the interpretation. American culture and history is revealed through the stories of iconic Americans from different times and backgrounds. Photographs cover the walls of the memorial section. And the social impact of the war is explored through two interactive graphic novels telling a story of friendship between a US airman and a Norfolk family.
The library redesign has been well received by local people of all ages. It has also been shown virtually to American families of former servicemen unable to visit due to Covid restrictions. They have all been very positive about the new look library and the new interpretation, and have been especially moved by the memorial wall.