Friday, September 10, 2010

Cambridge Libraries

Libraries in Cambridge
A lot has been said about the Library service in Cambridge. The fact remains that the Library service is a fantastic service that gives so much to so many people.

There is a review of the Library service going on at the moment. This has prompted all sorts of calls for no cuts etc. The current proposals are:
  • possible new shared and / or externalised management and support arrangements
  • introducing self-service machines into all libraries and working more closely with community volunteers
  • a review of library provision in Cambridge City and the surrounding area
  • streamlining the mobile library service
  • new support arrangements for Library Access Points
  • cutting costs
  • increasing income
The Lib Dems jumped on the band wagon saying 'Save our Libraries' so they could put some leaflets out, with them looking sad and serious. The FAQ's on the County website answer the questions clearly, The lead member had also already made a statement before any leaflets were dropped through doors:
Cambridgeshire County Councillor Sir Peter Brown, Cabinet Member for Communities, said: “We are putting Cambridgeshire communities at the heart of transforming our library service to meet their needs and be ready for the future. Libraries are community hubs and we want to make sure residents have their say on shaping services while meeting these tough financial challenges. Public services countrywide have been asked to meet savings of 25 per cent or more, but this does not mean we should salami-slice library services; my main priority is saving them. We will innovate to protect the services our communities say are important so that we can deliver more for less. But we need residents’ help. Your library really does need you!”

It is the Community that wants to work together and have the Library service they want and need. I tweeted about the story in the Cambridge News concerning Chesterton Residents Association . This is an absolutely fantastic example of the Community pulling together to look at what services they want. It is clear the Libraries are an important feature of the area, and thanks to the residents they will continue to be, and I applaud that.

There is an online survey about consultation into the Library service. I would urge everybody to fill it out, so you have your say:

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