Several key strands I think today:

– World Book Day. Some lovely pictures and news from around the country where libraries have been quite rightly promoting themselves to schools in connection with this day. My prize goes to Manchester, source of so much positive news recently, who provided thousands of free books to commuters. My thought for the future is that World Book Day is one which every library service should be involved – much like the Summer Reading Challenge – and it would be great to see a more national approach to this being taken rather than the atomised approaches I’m seeing from different library services.

– The mishandling of the change of location of Bath Central Library is truly the news story that keeps on giving. The council have quietly extended the “consultation” (although council workers are clear that the move, to a smaller and more remote site, is definitely going ahead – perhaps they did not get the memo?) and changed it, without telling anyone. The phrase “Having a bath” now means in my mind “hopeless library consultation”. Perhaps Warringhton Livewire have been advising them?

– The Taskforce have produced two very pro non-traditional income generation posts. One is very obvious but the one on Warwickshire starts out being on lessons learnt on their library redesigns but ends as an advertisement to use their framework for other library services for a fee [NB. my original version of this post suggested this was for consultancy, it was not – Ed.]. The taskforce have always been very much in favour of such things, and not simply as a way of mitigating the effects of budget cuts, with there being very little (or indeed no) noticeable pushback from anyone in senior library management about the problems this may have in conflicting with the public library ethos, or indeed in setting one library service in competition with another. I say this not as a dyed in the wool leftwinger – I’m not – but as someone who is aware when one side of the argument is not being given sufficient prominence (although to be fair the social media I see is very much in the opposite direction).



Media mentions heatmap

This shows longer term trends in authorities than this post alone.  Only authorities with 6 or more are included. :

  •  Plymouth (11, -6), Bath and North East Somerset (11, -1), Manchester (8 – this is all positive news), Warrington (8, =), Walsall (6, -1), =), Bury (6), Darlington (7, +1), Devon (6, =), Kirklees (7, +1), Lancashire (6, =),

National news

  • Charitable (or not so?) Mutuals, 30% pay cuts and “misled” in Pembrokeshire. (oh! and a ‘Conservative Home’ contributor)  – Stop the privatisation of public libraries. A critical look at some library news.
  • Date Set for Dataset? – Leon’s Library Blog. “Unfortunately, the last seven years have highlighted the difficulty in providing accurate and comprehensive data regarding the depth and breadth of changes to the library network. This has allowed many councils and certainly many politicians to play loose and fast with the truth about libraries; some out of ignorance but others with the aim of furthering a political agenda. This in itself is a form of ‘fake news’.” … “there was, and continues to be, no definitive evidence concerning library closures and creation of volunteer led libraries.”… “given the delay how can we trust the Taskforce in the gathering of data from the current workshops? Or is it perhaps they are looking to gather less contentious material to take our focus away from how politically unpalatable the first dataset is proving to be.”
  • Income generation and alternative funding masterclasses – Libraries Taskforce. “…there is no one way to generate income for public libraries – effective solutions depend on local context, demographics and competition – and that it’s critical to have a strategic approach, a good grasp of the competitive environment, and the commercial nous to spot opportunities.” … ” things like being commissioned via public or private sector service contracts, or partnerships; direct trading and retail; getting money from charities, trusts, foundations or philanthropy; fundraising and crowdfunding; precepts from parish and town councils to support libraries; Community Infrastructure Levy / Section 106 agreements; and, looking longer-term into the future, social investment and alternative funding models like social impact bonds and blended funds”. Two “masterclasses” to be held.
  • UK publishes Digital Strategy outlining plans for Makerspaces, IP protection for 3D printing, and internationally connected Tech Hubs – 3D Printing Industry. “In addition, libraries across the UK, and particularly in Scotland, have started to provide 3D printing facilities. With additional CNC and laser cutting capabilities, some libraries have even started hosting Fab Labs and Makerspaces.” … Strategy says “We will bring together people from across sectors to collaborate and support the expansion of makerspaces in public libraries in England.”
  • World Book Day: Without libraries we are less human and more profoundly alone – Guardian. “Councils threaten libraries with closure and then rely on volunteers to keep them open. But professional librarians are the key to a healthy library” … “Librarians are far more than stackers and catalogers. They are creative curators of their book collections. They review and renew their flocks of books, adjusting what they have to fit their readers, highlighting certain sections and topics to reflect the world. They are on hand to guide and encourage, to foster relationships between books and people. Subtly, quietly, inexorably, they weave individuals into a community. They make a library shimmer, as if the books were the scales of a dragon flexing as it folds and flies”

International news

  • USA – Informed and Engaged Communities: The Critical Impact of Libraries on Civic Life – Aspen Institute Dialogue on Public Libraries. “This means I get to work with libraries of all shapes and sizes across the country. I learned a lot this past year, and here are some of the trends I am seeing:” democracy, safe space, “emphasis on the outside” and location.
  • USA – Lou Reed Archives Head to New York Public Library – New York Times. “Packed away was a huge collection of paperwork, photographs and recordings — more than 600 hours of demo tapes, concerts and even poetry readings — that spanned most of Reed’s career. He had spoken “not one sentence” about what to do with it all, Ms. Anderson said, and her first instinct was simply to put it all online. But soon she began looking for an institution that could maintain the material properly and also make it accessible to the public”

Local news by authority

  • Barnet – Schoolkids celebrate World Book Day by protesting Barnet Council’s library cuts at East Finchley Library – Times Series. “Hundreds of children in colourful costumes chose to commemorate World Book Day by joining a protest against the rapid reduction of their library services. Barnet Council is currently trying to save £2.2 million of its budget with alterations to borough libraries including a reduction in staff hours and privately renting out certain library space. Showing their opposition to the project, an organised picket of East Finchley library saw schoolchildren and parents gather yesterday afternoon (Mar 2) to mark World Book Day” … “The concerns expressed by children, in the character costumes they wore to school, and parents included the introduction of CCTV cameras to replace staff, which they said excluded children from going to libraries unsupervised. “
  • Barnsley – Change Manager – Barnsley Council. Vacancy. “You should possess a Level 5 Diploma in Management or Leadership, project management training, and significant experience of successfully leading operational teams through periods of change. You must demonstrate a positive attitude and the ability to motivate team members, work with a wide range of internal and external customers and partners, and have a creative and innovative approach to service delivery and audience development. You must also demonstrate excellent communication and presentation skills for a variety of audiences.  This is a permanent position, but along with the entire Service, will be subject to the outcomes of the Service re-modelling. “
  • Bath and North East Somerset – Bath Central Library study space is great – why not create more, better free spaces to work? – Bath Chronicle / Letters. “As a freelance copywriter, I’m not able to afford to rent one of the £40 a day desks in the Guildhall Hub or fork out £3 every half hour to work from a cafe. The large study space in the Podium library is the one place in Bath where I can work at a desk in the warm”. Writer is very disappointed by plans to move library into smaller premises further away from town centre: “None of this is my idea of modernisation. Rather than wasting millions on turning the library into new Council offices, why not create more and better free spaces for people to work in? That’s my idea of modern thinking”
  • Bath and North East Somerset – Confusion rife over the future of Bath Central Library – Bath Chronicle. “The consultation over the library’s future launched on February 1 and has had “three iterations” since then, according to Ms Kirk. Yet the closing date has just been “extended” as if it is one continuous, unaltered consultation, she said. She said that while questions addressing what people wanted from their library services had not changed, the preamble introducing it had, fundamentally affecting how people responded.”
  • Bath and North East Somerset – Everything you need to know about the Bath Central Library move consultation – Bath Chronicle. “Campaigners are suspicious about why a public consultation to move Bath Central Library has been extended by three weeks. The extension was not announced by Bath and North East Somerset Council but was noticed by one of the campaigners yesterday when they visited the council website to respond. Originally due to close at midnight tonight, the consultation now has a closing date of March 17. The online-only consultation has been fraught with controversy since before it even opened. The council wants to move the library from its current home at the Podium to Lewis House in Manvers Street. Rumours had been flying that the planned library move, mooted in December 2015, was a done deal and that the consultation was about how it would look rather than where it would be.”
  • Bradford – Best-selling author to give talk at library – Telegraph and Argus. “Milly Johnson will be at the North Street premises on Saturday, March 25, as part of celebrations marking publication of her thirteenth novel, The Queen of Wishful Thinking. Hardback copies of the book will only be available to borrow from libraries and will not be on sale in bookshops.”
  • Bradford – Children in Bradford district get into character for World Book Day – Telegraph and Argus. As in previous years, children have been invited to dress as their favourite literary characters.”
  • Buckinghamshire – Tourist centres in High Wycombe, Marlow and Princes Risborough to merge with library service in bid to save £200,000 – Bucks Free Press. “The Wycombe district’s tourist information centres are set to merge with the library service in a bid to save taxpayers hundreds of thousands of pounds. Wycombe District Council will pay Bucks County Council Library Services to run the information service, which has centres in High Wycombe, Marlow and Princes Risborough, from April 1. The move could save the district council around £200,000 over the length of the initial five-year agreement. While the three centres have already moved from their own buildings into their town libraries over the years, they have, until now, retained separate service points with their own dedicated staff.”
  • Caerphilly – Caerphilly Library Service excels at Marketing Excellence Awards – Caerphilly Council. “Caerphilly Library Service has triumphed at the recent Marketing Excellence Awards 2017, scooping three awards including Marketing Champion of the Year. Thanks to their hard work and dedication, Caerphilly Library Service claimed an award in each category during the Marketing Excellence Awards, these were: Winner – Marketing Champion of the Year – This award was presented to Library Assistant Marcus Edwards and Senior Library Assistant Damon Christopher for their contribution towards developing coding clubs within the borough’s libraries and supporting the digital agenda. ‘Highly commended’ – Demonstrating Marketing Excellence – Awarded due to the way that Caerphilly Library Service’s staff utilise Twitter, with each library using their own individual Twitter handle which provides a local voice reaching out into the community and beyond. ‘Highly commended’ – Joint Marketing Project of the Year – This award was presented as a result of the Service’s work with Dementia Friends, Picture to Share with residential homes within the borough and Reminiscence Pod work with partnership organisations in and around the borough.”
  • Camden – Top 30 things in Camden: Libraries – Love Camden. Lists what’s on offer.
  • Cheshire East – Renowned children’s performer coming to Handforth library – Wilmslow.co.uk. “”The Boy Who Cried Wolf” forms part of Cheshire Rural Touring Arts’ (CRTA) spring season of touring, taking professional arts events to village halls and libraries across the county.”
  • Croydon – Free courses on offer at Upper Norwood Library – Inside Croydon. Now subtitled “hub on the hill”. “Upper Norwood Library is to stage a number of courses and talks through March and April. All are free to attend, though you may need to book your place…”
  • Devon – Libraries Unlimited Management should take the same average paycut as their staff – Change.org. “Staff have been told: That they are not permitted to talk to anyone outside the organisation about this removal of pay; That they are not eligible for voluntary redundancy; That the TUPE regulations they were told would protect their pay and conditions after leaving Devon County Council do not cover this change in contract; That those who do not sign the variation to their contract will be dismissed and re-engaged on the new conditions regardless. The Senior Management Team have rejected suggestions about all staff taking a proportionate pay cut. When asked whether senior staff would take a pay cut as well, Ciara Eastell, CEO of Libraries Unlimited said she ‘worked hard’ and ‘didn’t think she deserved [one]’.” … “We propose that the Senior Management Team take a paycut proportionate to the average amount of salary lost by their staff through this proposal.”
  • Essex – Brentwood Library to stay at its current home amidst town hall move rumours – Essex Live. “Brentwood Library will stay in its current home and not move to the town hall, it has been confirmed. There had been speculation that the library could have been moved into the town hall as part of cost-cutting measures to tie into transformation plans for the civic centre. However Councillor Ann Brown, who is the cabinet member for corporate and communities with Essex County Council has now indicated that the library will remain in its current home in New Road.”
  • Essex – Wickford’s £1.5m revamp will include library at its core, say senior councillors – Echo. “…plans to revamp a “tired” part of Wickford will keep the library at its heart, senior councillors say. Plans to move Wickford Community Association, in Market Road, were revealed following Basildon Council’s annual budget meeting as part of a £1.5million scheme. The site of the current centre is wanted by Willows shopping centre owners, London & Cambridge Properties, for new shops and flats. One site mooted for the town centre includes park land about one mile away in Nevendon Road.”
  • Fife – Farewell to Kinghorn’s librarian – Fife Today. “The end of an era was marked this week as Kinghorn library closed its doors this week. And the community council presented librarian Tricia Dakers, who has been in charge for 13 years, with flowers to thank her.“Our library was not failing, so I still believe that it was closed for the wrong reasons but I am confident that the community-led library that will take over will be a success,” said chairman, Alan McIlravie. “Tricia had a gentle and encouraging way with the youngsters – every child got to stamp their book and when they were returned, she would encourage them to tell her what the book was about. Tricia wasn’t just a librarian, she was our librarian.”
  • Hampshire / Southampton – More than a dozen Hampshire libraries closed – on World Book day – Southern Daily Echo. “Thirteen libraries across Hampshire, including five in Southampton, will remain closed – despite the worldwide annual celebration of authors, illustrators, books and reading taking place today. Southampton’s Burgess Road, Cobbett Road, Woolston, Portswood and Thornhill libraries are closed, and in Hampshire, libraries in Bishop’s Waltham, Netley and Lyndhurst are among those remaining shut.” … “Miss Kaur said while it was “unfortunate” World Book Day falls on a day where some libraries are closed, there are several celebratory events happening at schools and other community hubs across the city”
  • Haringey – £2bn sell-off of Haringey Council property ‘will force out families and destroy community’ – Evening Standard. “The £2 billion proposal will shift huge swathes of public property including homes, schools, business premises and libraries into private hands.” … “The 20-year deal will initially involve the transfer of Cranwood care home in Muswell Hill, the council’s civic centre, Station Road offices and library in Wood Green and Northumberland Park.”
  • Herefordshire – Leintwardine Library bucks national trend to increase visitor numbers – Ledbury Reporter. “Leintwardine Library is now open 70 per cent more hours each month while library use is up 13 per cent thanks to the efforts of local volunteers who have breathed new life into the facility. They formed a new library support group – FOLCL – which set itself the challenging target of turning round library use, and transforming the way the library worked to meet local needs.”
  • Islington – Finsbury Library: Still relevant after 50 years – Islington Gazette. The beauty of Finsbury Library is its relevance to anyone who lives or works in Islington. Its Ben Kinsella Exhibition, for example, has been used to educate thousands of primary school children about the horrors of knife crime. The building is also home to Islington Museum, with exhibitions ranging from the Holloway Prison Suffragettes to Trade, the renowned gay clubnight in Farringdon’s Turnmills venue. And the Gazette regularly visits its local history centre, which holds our archives dating back to 1856.”
  • Lambeth – Tender of provision of basement excavation and underpinning workContracts Finder. £1.4 to £1.6m. For Carnegie Library.
  • Leeds – Report to Scrutiny Board – Leeds City Council. “The Connect-Ability project delivered by the Library Service and referenced in our previous report to Scrutiny offered a small-scale ‘proof of concept’ for tablet lending. We are now moving to a full pilot scheme with up to 100 tablets and a full Mobile Device Management infrastructure. We believe the tablet lending scheme will bring the benefits of digital inclusion to some of our most excluded citizens.”
  • Manchester – Commuters encouraged to read and ride on World Book Day – Literacy Trust. “Commuters across Greater Manchester were surprised with free books this morning to celebrate World Book Day 2017. As part of the Read Manchester campaign, every tram on the Metrolink network will be filled with children’s books and Quick Reads titles for adults from iconic authors including Agatha Christie, Dame Jacqueline Wilson and David Walliams” … “Peter Cushing, Transport for Greater Manchester’s Metrolink Director, said: We are pleased to be able to join our partners in celebrating the twentieth anniversary of World Book Day. It’s such an important campaign – one in six people in the UK live with poor literacy skills, which can impact every aspect of life. “Travelling on public transport can be a good time to catch up on some reading. We hope our customers and their loved ones enjoy the books left for them this morning.””
  • Manchester – Get Data Smart: open data and online privacy day – Eventbrite. “. All the workshops are free.  Inspired by Alison Macrina’s Library Freedom Project and Aude Charillon’s pioneering UK work on online privacy at Newcastle Libraries. In a post-truth, alt-facts world library staff might be interested in attending our Get Data Smart Festival at Manchester Central Library on Friday 17 March.  Sign up for free workshops on:     The Wonderful World of Wikidata with Andy Mabbett ;  An introduction to Open Data with Claire Back;  Big Browser is Watching You with Aude Charillon;  CryptoParty Manchester hosted by Manchester Open Rights Group;  and there’s lunch. Sign up for workshops over at Eventbrite (scroll down for the Get Data Smart events).” [Source: email – Ed.]
  • Manchester – Mega Digital Festival on offer at Manchester Libraries this month – Manchester City Council. “a month long-celebration of digital enterprise and discovery, to help local small businesses and entrepreneurs.”. More than 30 events. “For the last three years, Manchester Libraries has been working with start-up and small businesses to help them to take full advantage of digital technology.  Funded by BDUK, the Central Library Demonstrator Suite has delivered courses, workshops and seminars to businesses, enabling them become more competitive, saving time and money.  More than 15,000 places have been taken up at events since the project launched.”
  • Monmouthshire – Library views sought – Forest Review. “Library users in Caldicot, Chepstow and Monmouth are being asked for their views on the local library service in a survey beginning on Monday (March 6). Cllr Bob Greenland, Monmouthshire’s Cabinet member responsible for libraries said: “The public library service survey gives customers an opportunity to suggest improvements and will only take a few moments to complete”
  • North East Lincolnshire – Warning of the many changes hidden within the gobbledegook – letter – Grimsby Telegraph. “What was (and still is) in question, is how that statutory obligation will be delivered. For example, will it be delivered from the same purpose-built building? Will it be delivered by paid employees? Or will it be delivered by unpaid volunteers? How will that affect the quality of delivery of the library service (efficient? comprehensive?)? And how will taking people out of employment fulfil the “stronger economy” mantra of this authority? (Or the stronger community?)”
  • North Yorkshire – Appeal for volunteers to help run Helmsley community library – Gazette and Herald. “Helmsley Community Library, which will be officially launched on April 1, will be run entirely by volunteers and is looking for help from local people. A steering group is asking members of the town if they can spare a couple of hours – whether it’s weekly, fortnightly or monthly – to help man the library, to allow it to keep offering the same valuable services it does currently. Training is provided, and volunteers would always work in pairs.”
  • Plymouth – ‘Mass read-in’ to save Plymouth library from closure – Plymouth Herald. “Library campaigners are planning to stage a ‘mass read-in’ to show their feelings about the council’s closure plan. The event will take place at Peverell library on Saturday from 10.30am. Labour Party activist Jeremy Goslin says people will be encouraged to borrow as many books as possible.”
  • Plymouth – People think Plymouth library closures plan is ‘a done deal’ – Plymouth Herald. “Plymouth City Council bosses say they are disappointed with the take-up, which represents just 1.4 per cent of all library users, putting it down to “an element of apathy” and the perception that a decision has already been made. Strategic development manager Dave Saunders (below) said: “Maybe that’s because people think it’s a done deal. But we want to hear from everybody city-wide. “We are engaging with all our library users and still getting a low turnout. I don’t know what the answer is.”
  • Plymouth – ‘Read-in’ protest against plans to close Plymouth library – Plymouth Herald. Photographs of protests.
  • Redbridge – World Book Day: Redbridge libraries manager shares thoughts on importance of reading – Ilford Recorder. ““World Book Day is one of our community programmes to get children excited about reading,” she said. “And in Redbridge we take our children’s reading programmes very seriously.” The fact Redbridge issues more books to children than any other London borough attests to that, and staff and volunteers feel “very proud” about the achievement.”

““I think our success around children’s reading engagement is because we invest quite heavily in terms of the stock and we have lots of activities throughout the year,” said Anita, “And World Book Day is one of those highlights.” Drop-in book-themed sessions and storytelling events will run after school at a number of Redbridge’s libraries (with staff joining in with the dressing-up), and the fun will continue into Saturday with workshops led by Wizard Stories and Tamarind Theatre.”

  • Scottish Borders – End of story for national newspapers at Hawick Library – Hawick News. “national dailies will no longer be available at the North Bridge Street library or any of the other 11 public libraries in the region. They will continue to stock local weekly papers such as the Hawick News and Southern Reporter, however. A spokesperson for Live Borders defended the decision to ditch the dailies, saying: “In recent years, demand for this service has declined dramatically due to the wide range of media platforms now on offer.  “We felt that to stock a full range of national papers to avoid any political bias would be an unnecessary cost to the service.”
  • Sheffield – Town Hall in the frame for new Central Library – Sheffield Telegraph. “Sheffield Town Hall is in the frame as the site for a new city centre library if proposals to create a luxury hotel come to fruition. The council is looking at the option of adapting part of its Grade I-listed headquarters – most likely the ground floor but possibly more of the premises – to accommodate the Central Library facilities.” … “A completely new library building has not been ruled out. However, the council has committed to keeping a library service ‘in the heart of the city centre’ – defined as within ‘around half a mile’ of the Surrey Street site”
  • Sheffield – Volunteer Libraries – Star / Letters. “I wouldn’t, knowing what I know and having seen what I’ve seen with volunteer libraries in the UK, volunteer to keep a ‘library’ open. Asking library users to pay taxes, volunteer and crowdfund to keep services open, equates to double and triple taxation. It is wrong on so many levels. It is a shame that our current council has councillors proud to be ‘running’ libraries solely with volunteers so they are able to claim all libraries have been kept open. Is this naive, totally clueless or what? We need a better vision for Sheffield’s libraries before it is too late”
  • Suffolk – Pop-up libraries in Red Lodge, Shotley and Moreton Hall: Is this needed in your area? – East Anglian Daily Times. “This year the Suffolk Libraries Local scheme will be tested in Red Lodge, Shotley and Moreton Hall, all of which do not have a permanent library. There will be a weekly session held in a public space where people will be able to browse and borrow from a selection of books, attend a range of activities for all age groups and use IT facilities for research. The initiative, which is funded by Suffolk County Council and led by Suffolk Libraries, will be trialled in each area for six months and organisers are currently talking to residents to ensure the service will meet their needs. Tony Brown, chairman of the Suffolk Libraries board, said the first three locations had been chosen because they were areas of increased housing development where the communities could benefit from the variety of services that libraries offer.”
  • Sunderland – Cuts to Sunderland’s homeless services: a bitter taste of things to come – Guardian. “Like many other councils, Sunderland has proposed closing many libraries and suggesting communities run them instead. The richer the borough, the more likely it is people can afford to get involved in running a library for free, penalising poor areas by design. But community-run libraries are never as successful or inclusive as properly run libraries: librarians are professionals, who curate and perform outreach rather than simply shelf stack.”
  • Sunderland – Groups sought to run local libraries – Northern Echo. “… find potential partners to take over the running of eight previously council-run libraries. Plans were agreed earlier this month to retain only town and city centre libraries in Houghton-le-Spring, Washington and Sunderland. But Sunderland City Council left the way open for talks with the voluntary, public and private sectors to oversee the running of the remaining eight library buildings, as community venues. These include the library at the Hetton Centre, at Hetton-le-Hole, and Shiney Row Library, on Chester Road.” see also Council in talks over future of Sunderland libraries – Sunderland Echo.
  • Surrey – Library resources face £346K of cuts as Surrey Conservatives are forced to reveal the facts – Surrey County Council Liberal Democrats. “Library resources face £346K of cuts as Surrey Conservatives are forced to reveal the facts” … “Liberal Democrat county councillors in Surrey have expressed their anger as the Conservative County Council was forced to reveal cuts of £346K to library resources over the next two years. The Conservative-administration plans to reduce the county’s library resources budget, used to buy items such as books and DVDs, by £346K which amounts to a cut of 22% by 2019. The reduction in the resources budget for libraries follows significant cuts in the amount of library stock owned by the county council, which has dropped from 1,597,830 items in December 2013 to 1,386,752 items in March 2016 – a reduction of 211,078 items (13%). The £346K cut was buried in the confidential section of council papers that were discussed at the Council’s Cabinet this week but Liberal Democrat councillors objected to this excessive secrecy, and successfully argued for the information on the cuts to library resources to be placed in the public part of the council papers so that all councillors and residents had access to the facts.”
  • Swindon – Communities step in to save libraries – Swindon Advertiser. “Local groups or individuals had until January 31 to submit expressions of interest in the non-core libraries and those believed to be interested include Stratton St Margaret Parish Council as well as Wroughton Parish Council who have set aside £43,000 in next year’s budget for the sole purpose of funding a library service. ” … “The delivery models that will be considered include keeping the library service in-house so it continues to be run by the Council, setting up a Local Authority Trading Company wholly owned by the council with services delivered via a contract, or creating a Public Service Mutual (PSM). “
  • Trafford – Provision of a Home Library Service – Contracts Finder. £22k: “the buying department is looking for potential suppliers to contact them with bid applications” … “The Home Library Service is available for any resident of Trafford who is physically unable to get to a Trafford library and has no one to help them do so or can get to a library but cannot carry books/items home or is a carer and is unable to visit libraries due to limited time as a result of their caring responsibilities”
  • Warwickshire – Taking library refits to the next level – Making design a reality – Libraries Taskforce. “When looking to redesign and remodel a number of libraries, we looked for a more cost effective way to procure design services. With reductions in staff capacity and with limited resources, Warwickshire, like other authorities, were finding procurement processes ever more challenging and time consuming. We looked to see if anything already existed that might help, but found nothing to meet our needs. Rising to the challenge, we embarked on the development of a refit framework which would provide bespoke design services, refit and after-care and, importantly, a process that would offer real savings in time, money and resource both now and in the future.” This then links to an option to buy into a design service run by Warwickshire Libraries – Refit framework for libraries across England and Wales – Warwickshire Council.
  • West Berkshire – Future funding for libraries will not come from parish donations – Newbury Today. “Looking to fill a void in its funding, West Berkshire Council has asked councils to contribute £150,000 to keep its libraries open. The council is operating on a three-year forecast, but speaking at a recent Cold Ash Parish Council meeting, Dominic Boeck (Con, Aldermaston) said: “We are talking about a window of three years. We are not asking you to sign up for three years. “I can guarantee that we will not be coming back to ask for more. “My own stance is if we can’t run this library service in the budget that is set, it just won’t swallow to come back and ask for more money.””
  • West Berkshire – Hope for Wash Common library – Newbury Today. “One of the councillors spearheading the community response, Adrian Edwards (Con, Falkland), said an agreement was in place in principle to allow the community to take over the running of the building, with more than 60 volunteers willing to help, including former librarians. He said funding was still being sought through community grants, adding: “If we’re not in a position to take it over by April, the building will be mothballed until we’re ready.”
  • West Berkshire – Wash Common library to close – BBC. “Wash Common library in Newbury will shut its doors on Friday 31 March following a decision by West Berkshire Council to close the branch to save money. Library users will be able to borrow and return books and use the library facilities until the last day. “
  • West Sussex – Dan offers library talks for Wellbeing Month – Chichester Observer. “Writer Dan Jones will be running a series of six library talks for Wellbeing Month about meditation and Asperger’s.” £2.50 tickets.
  • Wigan – Saving Library – Leigh Journal / Letters. “DO you want to save Atherton Library? Then visit wigan.gov.uk/libraryconsultation. It is a very thorough questionnaire wanting to know all your personal details apart from the colour of your underwear. What the library needs is to be open until 7pm on a weekday and until 2pm on Saturdays, like Tyldesley Library. Halfway through you can see where the questionnaire is heading, trying to find out if you are fit and well and if you can spare time behind the counter.”
  • Wirral  – Why Hillsborough Voices matter on World Book Day – and every day – Liverpool Echo. “Birkenhead Library to host event with author and contributors of highly-acclaimed account of long fight for justice.”
  • York – £500,000 for Haxby Memorial Hall plans – Press. “It has been housed in Oaken Grove Community Centre since, and City of York Council and Explore libraries have bought a new mobile library to serve the area until a new permanent site is ready. Next Monday, March 13, culture boss Cllr Nigel Ayre will be asked to agree £500,000 of council money for the Memorial Hall redevelopment so the library can have a long-term new home there”