The eagle eyed amongst you may have noticed that the number of libraries under threat has stabilised and even gone slightly down recently.  Although it’s gone down even more today as I have taken out those that have closed before the start of the 2011 financial year, it may also have something to do with the 5th May local elections.  The widespread fear is that councils are waiting for that date to pass before announcing more cuts.  Voices for the Library are trying to make sure that this does not happen and that those councillors who have advocated closing libraries are called to account.  Let Voices for the Library know who is advocating library cuts in your area. 

480 libraries (413 buildings and 67 mobiles) currently under threat or closed/left council control since 1st April 2011 out of c. 4517 in the UK
– most recent closures = 4.4 Shropshire 3 mobiles  , 2.4.4 Foggy Furze Library 

Shropshire – weekly mobile library stops are now fortnightly (previous article suggest 3 mobiles will go so have extrapolated that these are what have been cut)
Somerset – Highbridge Library to be volunteer-run

BookSeller’s Association and Publisher’s Association in library plea to councils – BookSeller “”UK PLC needs a literate society. Books feed the mind, and libraries play a key part in making books available to all sectors of society. We urge councils to provide to their communities a comprehensive and efficient library service”.
Future of libraries in the Ebook Age – National Public Radio (USA)
Local Elections – Voices for the Library
LSSI on privatising libraries – Radio Merseyside (24.11 to 28 Stuart Fitzgerald, boss of LSSI – “offer a more cost-efficient service”, making a profit “raises some sensitivity in the library sector”, cut back-office by giving all its work to suppliers, use economies of scale, not necessarily cut staff (just move staff from back to front office), good enough for 16 clients (70 branches) in USA.
Making music to save our libraries – RabidGravy
Michael Gove replies, or rather he doesn’t – Lynnlibglamtwin’s Weblog
Save our libraries! – Tribune
Three ways to challenge the cuts – False Economy
Visit to a library – John Redwood MP “Maybe at a time of tighter spending controls we need to think again about how many libraries we need in each community, where they are best placed, and how the educational libraries can be used by those who do not go to those institutions.”

News by authority
Croydon – Save Sanderstead Library – Campaign group
Oxfordshire – Words of support in fight to retain libraries – Oxford Mail
Shropshire – Shropshire mobile library services reduced – BBC (900 responses to consultation)
Somerset – Highbridge Library saved – Mercury
Somerset – Saved! Future of closure-threatened Highbridge Library is secured – Burnham on