David Perry

This review was written by David Perry.

David is a passionate reader and library enthusiast.


Hi I am Dave, I am 37 years old and work as a domestic assistant. In my spare time I go at least twice a week to The Forum. I often meet people I know there just as I did where Southend Library used to be. One thing that amazes me is such a wide variety of comfortable soft chairs which are a number of different colours, I could compare the forum to a hotel, only of course the difference is I don’t sleep there. I specifically read and hold an interest in the second world war as on my father’s side of the family,  my Grandma’s brother was a British army riflemen in the Tower Hamlets Rifles serving in Tunisia during the period of the war that the enemy forces invaded North Africa and sadly he was killed in an enemy air strike and never returned home, his grave is amongst many other troops buried in Tunisia. I have never actually gone to visit it but I have a photocopy of the old letter sent to my Grandma’s  family informing them of his death. So I particularly focus my eye mainly on books on World War 2 and want to read about every part of the war as well as the North Africa campaign, and there is a huge variety of books on various aspects of this subject in The Forum, just as there was in the old Southend Library. I also have read a certain amount from books available about the holocaust as in my mother’s family history consists largely of Hungarian Jews, some of whom survived the suffering and some who sadly didn’t.

In 2005 I visited Budapest and paid tribute to my war time relatives who died in the holocaust. My Grandfather who survived the terror was a Rabbi in Hungary. Both my grandparents were rescued from persecution after a famous Swiss Vice Consul in Hungary called Carl Lutz helped to hide them in the Swiss embassy, had he not have done that brave thing, I would not have been here today. Carl is mentioned in a number of books about the holocaust which I have read from that are available in the forum. He was a devout Christian and is credited for saving over 62,000 Jews.

I also have a world war 1 book on loan too which I intend to read as I know it is equally important. I am very happy that so many countries that we used to consider our enemies are now our friends, and I hope for a future of peace and prosperity across the world.

The Forum in Southend

The views from the windows at The Forum are wonderful, although I concentrate on my books, I like to gaze out of the window occasionally when I am on an upper level of The Forum. From one side you see a spacious concrete area where people casually stroll across and on one known occasion I have even seen a band playing there. There is also another magnificent  view of nearby building blocks. The large TV screen  next to the forum building is an absolutely breath taking experience with all its adverts and attractions that it shows. The level of excitement that massive TV gives me is equal to that of my experience of walking along Broadway in New York City where a number of  large screens are advertising theatre productions. I had never dreamed that such a wonderful thing would be seen outside one of my local Essex libraries.  I am strongly considering coming to watch an opera show that is due to appear on it’s big screen later this year, as I have sang a small amount of opera pieces during the time I had vocal training myself.

On the other side of the building you see a view of a quiet  neighborhood street. Both that street and the other views I mentioned are very relaxing to look at. As with the old Southend Library and all other libraries I have been to, the staff are very efficient, I cannot think of one bad word to say about them. I have not taken part in any of the educational gatherings that are held at the library yet but feel I really must one day as I am sure I will be amongst like minded literary people. I must of course also comment on how good the self service electronic machines are for borrowing books and DVDs, I used to think I would find them hard to use but they are unbelievably easy to use.

If any of the library staff or any regular customers of this place click on my photo there is a chance that you may recognize me as I said I myself am a regular customer, rather like a fitness freak that loves going to the gym, I am a forum freak or if you like library lover would be the appropriate term. Or if you like the phrase book worm is very familiar with everyone , it has been around for years. I also take pride in using the internet access available in the building. I especially like to look at news sites like the BBC news website, as I am very interested in world affairs especially as I have an incredible family history of both happy and sad stories to tell.  Being that I have had two holidays in America, I also like to browse on the American CNN news website.  I have been on holiday in both New York and The West Coast of America and before hand had borrowed library books about both parts of America from two local libraries including The Forum. One of my favorite parts of the United States is San Francisco, in my mind it is the most beautiful city in America that I have seen so far.  My funniest memory from San Francisco is entering a souvenir shop from the wrong entrance and accidentally knocking down a load of fridge magnets that were attached to the door as I opened it, luckily none of them broke so I only had to pay for the two Golden Gate Bridge magnets that I wanted.

That is all I have to say about The Forum now, I hope this review was beneficial and not too over the top, I just love writing, back in my school days story writing was one of my favorite activities next to music. Singing is a major hobby in my life alongside reading. I was however an outsider at school unfortunately as I lived very much in my own planet but I try to go with the flow of what other people are into these days as I realize by now that it’s not always a good idea or for that matter widely appreciated by others to think I am the centre of the universe, although sometimes we are what we are and find it hard to adapt to what others want us to do, lol.

Thank you for reading this review.

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Images sourced from: southessex.ac.uk, adp-architecture.com