Professor Elemental launches campaign to replace missing books at Southwick Library

Paul Alborough, a steampunk hip hop entertainer who goes by the name Professor Elemental
Paul Alborough, a steampunk hip hop entertainer who goes by the name Professor Elemental

Library lover Paul Alborough has rallied graphic novel fans across the world to amass more than 100 books to donate to Southwick Library.

A steampunk hip hop entertainer who goes by the name Professor Elemental, Paul was enraged when he learned all the graphic novels from Southwick Library had gone missing and decided to launch a campaign to replace them.

Read more: Library to be transformed into community hub, bringing various services under one roof

He said: “With the help of comic enthusiasts around the world, I was able to amass over 100 graphic novels and comic book collections.

“Few would argue that libraries have had a tough few years. Since 2010, we have lost 478 libraries in the UK, not to mention 14million books. That’s why additional thefts from the library system can be even more heartbreaking for regular borrowers.

“Just before Christmas, the small but beautifully resourced library in Southwick had its entire graphic novel collection stolen. This left them borrowing stocks from other libraries and putting a strain on the system.

“Library theft is a worryingly common occurrence, particularly in smaller libraries, and it can have a real impact on the already stretched services.”

Paul said he is a big fan of Southwick Library so he got in touch with all his friends to see what could be done about replenishing the stocks. He also launched a campaign on YouTube, asking Steampunks and comic aficianados to help.

He said: “Even better, the new books can be accessed by everyone in West Sussex, meaning free graphic novels for all.

“This is a small campaign but with a brilliantly achievable aim. By writing this small wrong, we can also show that the world isn’t such a bad place after all.”

West Sussex County Council said thefts from libraries were rare.

A spokesman said: “It was a real shock when we found out so many graphic novels had been stolen from Southwick Library last year. We want to make libraries a central part of the community and when things like this happen it’s a real blow, not just for us, but for the residents that make use of these spaces on a daily basis.

“We are really touched that Professor Elemental took it upon himself to help us and it just goes to show what a difference people in the community can make when it is a subject close to their hearts.

“We can’t wait to meet Professor Elemental next week and thank him personally for his support and dedication to Southwick Library.”