416 libraries (344 buildings and 72 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. 


Campaign for the Book June Newsletter – Alan Gibbons.  Gives an overview of the new allies for libraries this month – the children’s laureate, the WI, even (more equivocally given Brent and Lewisham) the Labour Party.
Donaldson backs National Libraries Day – BookSeller.  “Hooray for National Libraries Day! So many wonderful things go on in libraries—not just reading, browsing and borrowing, but storytelling, rhyme times, book clubs, activity days, author events and holiday reading challenges—and this special day will be a celebration of them all.”
Don’t privatise that book!City Journal. Anti-union, pro-privatisation viewpoint on the Californian law that now makes it harder for libraries to be privatised.
Future Library – BookSeller.   New “Library of Birmingham” biggest public library project in Europe, “shop window for the city and culture of the city”.  Birmingham Council says it will not close any libraries.
Happy in the Library – Blog posts on people using the library.

“Surprisingly, far from being made obsolete by the Internet, public libraries are becoming more important. Forty-four percent of people living in households below the federal poverty line use the library to access the Internet. Yet many librarians report they cannot keep up with the demand of these patrons. (Chapter 18, Libraries.)Information needs of communities – Federal Communications Commission (USA).

Landmark US library to close – Guardian. ‘The greatest nation on earth’, as we still call ourselves, no longer has the political will to arrest its visible and precipitous decline and save the institutions on which the workings of our democracy depend … Their slow disappearance is a tragedy, not just for those impoverished towns and cities, but for everyone everywhere terrified at the thought of a country without libraries.”
People matterAnnie Mauger blog post, CILIP.
Reading buddies project helps the blind use North East libraries Journal Live.   Training for volunteers to help visually impaired users in libraries.
Somewhere special – Voices for the Library.  Touching descriptions of people using public libraries.

Women’s Institutes joins battle to save libraries – Guardian.  “It’s fabulous news for the millions of people across the UK that love their libraries. Libraries are an essential education and information resource. They are at the heart of communities across the country and are too important to lose,” (Annie Mauger, CILIP).

Changes to Library services

Birmingham – 39 less under threat. 
Islington – Guarantee no libraries will close.  10% (£600k) cut.  May be job losses, cuts in hours, more self-service.  Seriously considering turning into a Trust to save £450k p.a. in tax. 
North Yorkshire£300k off bookfund as part of bid to keep more libraries open. £592k cut to mobile libraries meaning no standard mobile libraries to remain running.
Somerset – The four (out of six) mobile libraries to be closed are based at Minehead, Bridgwater, Taunton and Wells meaning 209 communities will still receive a mobile library service whilst 206 communities, which currently receive a service, will no longer do so
Wokingham Privatised libraries may include community groups taking over libraries as well. 

Local News

Bexley/Bromley – More than 70 posts to go as Bromley and Bexley libraries merge – Bromley Times.
Bolton – High school offers to open its library to community – This is Lancashire. If Astley Bridge library closes, local high school could open a public library in its building if it was paid to do so.

“If you removed every single public library from the budget, it wouldn’t affect the budget crises we are trying to resolve. From a budget point of view libraries aren’t that significant. From a point of view of their contribution to a community and health of a local community, they are enormously important.” Brian Gambles, Assistant Director of Culture, Birmingham

Brent – Save out libraries: fight goes to the High Court – Londonist. “Unfortunately, no legal fight is cheap. There are lots of ways to lend your support; for starters, check out the comedy night at the North London Tavern on Friday 10th June. The Save Kensal Rise Library crew will also be at the Queen’s Park Literary Festival on Saturday 11th June.”
Croydon – Book Trail tragedy averted as Bashford overlooks the law again – Inside Croydon. Plan to have volunteers helping children without any CRB checking quashed.
Isle of Wight – Library campaigners report successful meeting with DCMS – Ventnor Blog.  DCMS officials interested and impressed by documents received. They also appeared surprised by lack of consultation by council and its lack of looking for alternatives of closure.  Campaigners have produced a full newsletter on the subject.
Islington – Library service could be run by charity trusts to save thousands in taxesIslington Tribune.  10% (£600k) cut in Islington library service, no closures – some job losses, cuts in hours, more self-service. Turning to a Trust would save £450k per year.
Manchester – Homework clubs axed at Manchester libraries in council budget cuts – Manchester Evening News.  Qualified tutors stop, librarians will be trained up instead.  Campaign started in Levenshulme against this – “The teacher at the homework club is brilliant and knows all the children, what their weaknesses are and what they need help with”.
North Yorkshire – Library chiefs look to cut amount spent on new books by £300k – Press.
North Yorkshire – End of road for mobile libraries – Whitby Gazette.  ““I think if we were in a town there would be enough heads to make a great big wave to stop this, but we can only create a ripple.
“It’s almost as if because you are rural you are not important because there’s not enough of you to fight back.”.  Only 3.4% of those consulted were in favour of closing mobile libraries but the cost per user is £77 per year.
Somerset – County Council plans to cut mobile libraries – BBC. 
Wokingham – “Council consulted no-one” claim as libraries row rages on – Get Wokingham.  Council says  that just because a private company will run the libraries, it does not mean they are privatised.  Opposition councillors point out there was no consultation and no detailed business case. “Library services are being privatised for ideological reasons. They could be the first in a long line of services that could be outsourced by the Conservative council. History tells us that outsourcing leads to cuts.”