395 libraries (319 buildings and 76 mobiles) currently under threat or closed/left council control since 1/4/11 out of c.4612 in the UK (for the complete list by area see the page “Tally by local authority”). Librarian professional body CILIP forecasts 600 libraries under threat (inc. 20% of English libraries).  The Public Libraries News figure is obtained from counting up all reports about public libraries in the media each day. 

News 

  • Analysis: The onward march of the leisure trustThirdSector.  Review of Trusts noting that granting charitable status was (and is) controversial “by permitting charities to carry out services that councils are bound by law to provide, such as libraries”.  Excellent (rare) report describing both the pros and cons of Trusts.
  • Library Association welcomes Labour’s positive stance on free public librariesLianza (New Zealand).  “In this time of technological change it is crucial that the principle of freedom of access to information, irrespective of format, is enshrined in law. There is currently a risk that some local authorities will treat the introduction of e-books as an income generating opportunity”.
  • Morgan to be Arts Council libraries directorBookSeller.  Nicola Morgan of the MLA will be new libraries boss, seeing her job as “an exciting new chapter” to “take forward libraries’ vital and enduring role in our communities in spreading reading, learning, and access to information.”
  • Parents “must let children choose what they read”Guardian. “make sure children talk directly to a librarian or a bookseller, while parents stand well back”. 
  • Plans to move gov online “lack cyber-security” says MPsRegister.  “It said the efficiency reform group should continue to make online services accessible via libraries, which have recently faced closures and cuts, as well as through post offices and other public spaces.”
  • Premier League Reading Stars - National Literacy Trust.  Chance for public libraries to receive major football backing free of charge. 
  • Review of library statutory dutiesVoices for the Library.  Government review of all duties (including the requirement for a “comprehensive and efficient” library service) now closed.  “The greatest numbers of responses, due to the campaign generated interest, were on: planning (including duties regarding allotments), children and young people, and libraries”… “we can see that support for public library services remains strong, which is extremely encouraging and positive, but at the same time there may also be a risk that these services can still be eroded via other routes.”
  • Shush No MoreVoices for the Library (Nilam Ashra-McGrath) – “who will listen to these voices? Will it be the mid-level policy adviser, fast-tracked through the civil service graduate scheme, who now finds himself in the midst of the library storm with his hands clapped firmly over his ears? I hope someone’s listening.”
  • Travelling to Taiwan? Free public Wi-Fi launched in TaipeiTNW.  Free Wifi in all libraries in Taipei, to be extended to blanket coverage of the capital by end of year.


Changes

Cambridgeshire – 48% cut over 5 years inc.  29 out of 45 managers to lose jobs. 
Enfield – 20% budget cut.

Local News

“Sources, from with the Warwickshire Library Service, tell me there is no news, just a lot of anxiety. But they (being employees) are expecting to hear that the library management are likely to recommend all 16 library closures. This employee has been looking at survey results and not one agrees with proposals. The majority are vehemently against where others have questioned the consultation format. He/She concluded saying WCC have been canny, stating that they want Community Libraries rather than just closing them. This may of stopped any protests – shame as libraries really are doomed.” Warwickshire – Libraries overview and scrutiny meeting Monday 11 July everyone please attendWhat’s in Kenilworth.  16 libraries face threat of closure, councillors have only three days to read report.