500 signatures reached
To: Cambridgeshire County Council
Save Milton Road Public Library in Cambridge from demolition
We urge you to withdraw your proposal to demolish Milton Road Public Library.
Why is this important?
Milton Road Public Library is an iconic building in the history of mathematics, celebrated for its connection with Professor Sir Andrew Wiles' proof of Fermat's last theorem. This dignified and much-loved building has served the public as a library since the 1930s, and continues to do so.
It was a book that Andrew Wiles found in the library when he was ten years old that inspired his remarkable achievement - Eric Temple Bell’s, 'The Last Problem'. Wiles had been on his way home from school when he stopped to look at the library’s puzzle section. He read that a proof of Fermat’s theorem had eluded mathematicians for 300 years. Thirty years later, Wiles announced his solution.
Milton Road Library had done what libraries should do - inform and inspire – with magnificent effect. Worldwide, few buildings are as closely associated with so notable a mathematical event.
Yet Cambridgeshire County Council proposes to demolish it – to build a 3-storey block of 10 flats, with a small library/‘community hub’.
This would be a huge loss to the heritage of mathematics and to the architectural and civic heritage of Cambridge.