Tower Hamlets to West Berkshire

To make the list is factual as possible, please email if you have any further information or a correction.

Dates included are the date that the information was added to Public Libraries News.  In more recent posts, the number shows the month (e.g. 3 = March, 4 = April) the article that contains the relevant information was published.


  1. Tower Hamlets.
    1. 2021: Cuts stopped after protests.  (3)
    2. 2020: £1m cut. Cubitt Town Library to close pending consultation. Watney Market and Bethnal Green Idea Stores to be closed for several months as being used by the NHS and then to reopen with reduced service. Sunday opening hours to be reduced. (11) Potential £1.6m out of £4m cut (£1m cut previously reported)  (12)
    3. 2014: “no cuts to frontline services like libraries and children’s centres”. (4):
    4. 2013: Pledge to not close libraries over next three years. (23/1/13). Watney Market Idea Store opens formally in May, includes “advice, training, classes and workshops” (30/1/13). Idea Store Watney Market opened (£4.5m jointly funded by Big Lottery Fund) inc One Stop Shop and community rooms (8).
    5. 2011: Staff made to reapply for their own jobs -23 library staff replaced. Staff 2007/8 131.4 2011/12 122.7 (4 prof, 118.7 other) Volunteers 2007/8 20 2011/12 14 (Cipfa).
  2. Trafford
    1. 2024: £347k LIF grant for Sale Library refurbishment and installing Cosgrove Hall Films exhibition. (3)
    2. 2022: Timperley Library reopens after seven years. (1)
    3. 2019:  Altrincham Library opens in new building, soon to be Open+. (2)
    4. 2018: To cease all library fines from 1st April. All children to be given a library card and BookStart book. (2) Hale Library may be demolished in housing development, with new library in co-location with community centre. (4) Timperley Library sold to developer, replacement planned.  (5) New library being built on site of general hospital, with open+. (10)
    5. 2017: £22k contract for supplying home library service. (3)
    6. 2015: 3 libraries to close (Bowfell, Davyhulme and Lostock) in £700k cut.(1) Hale Library will either be redeveloped into (i) a smaller library + houses (ii) new library elsewhere or (iii) selling/temporary library until new Altrincham Library in 2017. (3) Bowfell will close 27 April, Davyhulme will close 3 May, Woodsend fewer staff but Open+ may maintain hours, Lostock will transfer to college (school library with public access), Coppice will be transferred to BlueSCI mental health and wellbeing group, Timperley will reduce in size and be part of GP surgery, Hale will be sold to private developer who will need to maintain library for two years.
    7. 2014: £700k cut from £2.3m budget (10)
    8. 2013: Cuts include back-office staff, more volunteers.  Guarantee all libraries would have at least one paid member of staff in them, working with volunteers (3). Voluntary redundancies, with 130 volunteers replacing leaving paid staff.  All council staff to have sick pay halved and be forced to take three days unpaid leave per year. (11).
    9. 2012: 1 mobile to be closedVolunteers to partially replace paid staff in all branches to meet budget cut of £136k p.a (16/10/12). Following major protests in the two libraries which were going to be entirely volunteer run, £85k less will be cut from budget and five full-time library staff, rather than one each, will stay in post at Old Trafford and Hale after 2400 name petition.  Mobile library, though, will go. (28/3/12). Claim to be first ever UK authority to offer e-book readers on loan (£20 refundable deposit) (29/10/12).
    10. Mobile library service to be stopped(previously to be run by volunteers) and Bowfelland Greatstonelibraries to be entirely unstaffed (self-service only), Haleand Old Trafford libraries to be run by volunteers (Old Trafford has 2011 had major refurbishment of children’s library). CDs lending to be stopped.  Ebooks to be introduced. Talking books to become free.   Campaign group: Hands Off Old Trafford Library (H.O.O.T. Library, @hootlibrary, Facebook). “Library services absorbed into wider information and advice services with library service contributions not present at senior level in authority.” (MLA Report, Dec 2010)
  3. Vale of Glamorgan
    1. 2020: Penarth Library to be extensively refurbished inc. makerspace.(9)
    2. 2018: Open+ at Barry Central extends opening hours for 18+.(4)
    3. 2017: Open+ in Barry Central as pilot and then extended if successful. (1) St Athan Library to reopen as volunteer, on 1st April. (3) Penarth children’s library refurbished. (7)
    4. 2016: Libraries budget cut by £525k: budget £2,051,000 in 2016/17  (5). Barry Library becomes learning hub, with three classrooms added.  (7) Sully library now volunteer-run. (8) £100k learning suite at Barry Library.  (11)
    5. 2015: Dinas Powys, Sully, Rhoose, Wenvoe and St Athan to be volunteer run (4) Changes in Barry and Penarth opening hours following consultation. (5)
    6. 2014: Rhoose Library under threat. (12). £500k cut from budget of £2.59m  (inc. £309k cut in staff, £165k cut in buildings). Llantwit Major improvement will cost £250k (inc. £120k grant from CyMal).  Increased charges, Friends groups to be established in all branches, bookfund cut of £25k (from £220k). Expected job losses: 3 from Barry, 6 from the ‘non closure’ of Dinas Powys, 5 from smaller libraries. 4 libraries (Sully, Dinas Powys, St Athan and Wenvoe) to be volunteer-run. (5)  £250k refurbishment of Llantwit Major Library (with Cymal funding). (9)
    7. 2013: £165k budget cut. Consultation until December 15th (11).
    8. 2012: No cuts reported as of July 2012.
    9. 2011: 2 mobiles closed – 1 mobile ceased June 2011.  2nd and last mobile to cease end of Dec.  (Source: email from council).
  4. Wakefield
    1. 2024: £446k LIF grant for improving children’s library, designed to be inclusive of those with sensory and physical disabilities (3)
    2. 2022: £16m new library/museum/cafe(3)
    3. 2018: Co-location proposal for Knottingley Library (2) Pontefract Library refurbished.(3) £300k cut. Consultation. To include cuts in opening hours. (3)
    4. 2017: Ossett Library closed for nine months (since September 2016) due to asbestos: petition. No reopening date as yet. (5) Walton volunteer library may close due to Academy evicting from space. (9)
    5. 2016: Ossett Library to close for nine weeks due to asbestos. (9) Cuts amended: all 13 libraries to have opening hour cuts. (9) Opening hours cuts confirmed.(9)
    6. 2015: Sandal Library refurbished.(3) £150k cut: opening hours to be reduced by 56.5 hours in all. Consultation. (6)
    7. 2013: Upton will be run by volunteers from Easter (27/2/13). Knottingley Library to be sold off for retail units, library to move into leisure centre next door (3). Stanley Library to be refurbished (7). Knottingley Library reopens in sports centre with longer opening hours. (8). £1.4m combined Castleford library/museum to open in December.  (11).
    8. 2012: 7 under threat (inc. 2 closed and 2 to volunteers) – Outwood and Walton likely to close. Middlestown and Balne Lane will stay closed. Altofts, Kettlethorpe and Havercroft will be run by volunteers (25/7/12). £800k cut.  Six full-time equivalent staff (15 to 21 posts) to go.  £100k Seed money for volunteers.  £1m to improve remaining libraries and mobile (19/7/12). St Mary’s Community Centre Library closed (Dec 2012). 2 passed to volunteers (Havercroft and Kinsley Libraries to close and be transferred to local Learning Centres and run by volunteers 31/10/12),  Balne Library to be merged into Wakefield One building (29/5/12). Upton and North Elmsall Parish council are sending proposals to take over Upton Library, Kinsley and Fitzwilliam Community Resource Centre has made plans to take over Kinsley library (3/2/12). New library to be opened in Wakefield One on 29th October, co-location with museum (27/10/12)
    9. 2011: 12 out of 25 threatened – £520k cut this yearConsultation from 12/9/11 to 2/12/11.  Those not on list of “safe” libraries, though, are actually 13 – Ackworth, Altofts, Balne Lane, Crofton, Drury Lane, Havercroft, Kettlethorpe, Kinsley, Middlestown, Outwood, South Kirkby, Upton, Walton.  Voluntary redundancies for staff., Libraries likely to be run by private company/volunteers/others27 FTE posts may go. (libraries may be run by church/charitiesWestgate Library to be opened in 2012, possibly merged with Wakefield MuseumPetition  new central library but local closures  
  5. Walsall.
    1. 2019: Sunday opening ends, apart from at Central (£40k cut). £107k cut 2019/20. Reduced bookfund and IT.  (10)
    2. 2018: Central Library closed for ten months for refurbishment, without replacement.(2) Central Library repair/refurb to cost £4.3m (up £250k). Buildng not begun yet, due to finish November.(2)
    3. 2017: 9 libraries to close (Beechdale, Blakenall, New Invention, Pelsall, Pleck, Pheasey, Rushall, South Walsall and Walsall South). Previously, up to 15 (out of 16) previously threatened. (1) £3m cut (from previous figure £4m: 75% cut) (1) 9 libraries (Beechdale, Blakenall, New Invention, Pelsall, Pleck, Pheasey, Rushall, South Walsall and Walsall Wood) closed. Streetly to be volunteer. Central Library to have £4m “revamp”. (7) Pheasey now volunteer.(7)
    4. 2016 Threatened libraries (Beechdale, Blakenhall, New Invention, Rushall, South Walsall, Walsall Wood and Pleck) to remain open. £211k proposed cut withdrawn. Aldridge, Bloxwich, Brownhills and Willenhall libraries to have extended opening hours as “Open Plus Hubs (2) 7 libraries to be saved. as Labour join coalition with Lib Dems (5). 15 out of 16 libraries threatened. (10)
    5. 2015: Closure of five libraries (Pheasey, Beechdale, Walsall Wood, Walsall South and Streetly) deferred for three months until July. Rushall, New Invention and Blakenall will close at some point later than July.  (2) £580k bookfund stays the same this year. (8) Confirmed £328k cut this year plus additional £159k next. 7 out of 16 libraries to close, plus mobile to close. 13 jobs lost.  (10)
    6. 2014: Encourages volunteers to replace paid staff in libraries (6). 8 out of 16 libraries under threat inc. Blakenall, New Invention and Rushall to definitelt close. Beechdale, Pheasey, South Walsall, Streetly and Walsall Wood may close. £500k cut.  (10)
    7. 2013: Plans for £2.6m new Bentley Library delayed as land was not sold: land will go back on market in Summer. (5).
    8. 2012: New combined health centre and library to open in Pelsall in mid November (6/11/12).
    9. 2011:  £1.3m cut via self-service machines and volunteers – Previously 6 (out of 16) were under threat
  6. Waltham Forest
    1. 2021: Lea Bridge Library £1m extended with cafe, multi-use space. (9)
    2. 2020: New Wood Street Library opens.  (9)
    3. 2018: New library in Marlowe Road to replace Wood Street Library (7)
    4. 2016: Hale End, Higham Hill and Wood Street libraries may be relocated, Lea Bridge Library to be refurbished. (7)
    5. 2015: Leytonstone Library reopens after £1.5m refurbishment. (9)
    6. 2013: Leytonstone volunteer-run library will open in April. (3). CDs and DVDs withdrawn for all but educational purposes (4) Leytonstone volunteer-run Library will lend books from May (open for computer use now) for 3 hours per week (4) Harrow Green Community Library (volunteer-run) re-opens after closure of paid-staff library (5). £5m for Chingford, Leyton, Leytonstone and Walthamstow converting them to “Library Plus” to include libraries taking on “birth registrations, children’s centre activities and adult learning courses, as well as possibly including police meetings” (5).
    7. 012: 21 staff lost in January 2012, smaller branches closed for two days per week.  Adult social care and children’s services may be based in libraries shortly (5/1/12). South Chingford will have a new volunteer-run library in April (24/2/12), with books and computers supplied by the council, replacing old library closed in December. 24 staff lost jobs 2011/12 (28/3/12). Staff 2007/8 75.9 2011/12 73 (5.8 prof, 67.2 other) Volunteers 2007/8 0 2011/12 4 (Cipfa).
    8. 2011: Harrow Green and South Chingford libraries closed 2/12/11.  Harrow Green Library may be kept open with volunteers.  Harrow Green and South Chingford will close on Friday 2nd December otherwiseSouth Chingford and Leytonstone Harrow Green libraries to be closed.  £1m cut (20%) over 2 years.  North Chingford, Walthamstow, Leyton and Leytonstone libraries to have hours cut to 30 hours per week.  Libraries being merged with benefits/council tax/advice service, library jobs lost 4.1.12. Walthamstow Central, North Chingford, Leyton and Leytonstone branches will be rebranded as ‘Library Plus’ facilities with longer opening hours and extra council services. 
  7. Wandsworth
    1. 2024: Putney Library £1 million refurbishment of children’s library and new co-working space. (7)
    2. 2023: Expanded and refurbished Northcote Library nearing completion. (4) Refurbished Wandsworth Town Centre Library opens (11)
    3. 2018: Pledge no libraries to close. Money to be spent on new libraries and refurbishing old ones. (3)
    4. 2017: Northcote Library may be expanded. (2)
    5. 2016: £4.3m budget (-34.4% since 2009/10) (3)
    6. 2014: Putney Library opening hours increased by three hours. (4). Smaller libraries may be under threat. (10)
    7. 2013: Libraries will be transferred to GLL from April 2nd (3).
    8. 2012: Contract for running library services appear to have been given to GLL (15/11/12). Friends groups to start as pilot at Tooting and then be rolled out: to provide funds, publicity, volunteers, other assistance (9/3/12). Staff 2007/8 127.4 2011/12 110.8 (37.4 prof, 73.4 other) Volunteers 2007/8 67 2011/12 79 (Cipfa).
    9. Tendering process for privatization (joint process with Croydon):  GLL, Laing and Wandsworth Libraries Management survive until the next round of the tending process (6/712); GLL, Laing and Wandsworth Libraries Management survive until the next round of the tending process LSSI (20/6/12)Civica has withdrawn from privatization tender, allowing in-house bid from Wandsworth Council to be reconsidered (21/5/12). Will be privatised in joint tendering process with Wandsworth,(Full paper to Council on decision to invite private tender for library services – Privatising/outsourcing service with initial tendering in collaboration with Wandsworth.  Interested parties (Sep 2011) are (a) Civica (b) LSSI (c) JLIS (John Laing) (d) GLL (e) Vision Redbridge (f) Essex County Council (g) Merton Council (h) Bexley and Bromley Council Consortium (i) Croydon Libraries Strategic Management Team (j) Wandsworth “in-house”.).
    10. 2011: York Gardens (description of council proposals here) stayed open due to volunteer assistance but with cuts in service and staffing  (decision not well-liked).
    11. 2010: Tooting Library re-opened in 2010 following a £2.938m refurbishment and extension project jointly funded by Wandsworth Council and The National Lottery Community Libraries Programme (source).
  8. Warrington
    1. 2024: Livewire Trust (leisure and libraries) brought back fully into council control at cost of £5m. (3)
    2. 2023: Culcheth Library reopens (11)
    3. 2022: Birchwood Library to move into leisure/tennis complex (5) £120k refurbishment of Penketh Library starts
    4. 2021: Cuts, including redundancies, expected.(1) Padgate Library £142k refurbishment announced. (3) £100k Penketh improvement.  (4) Museum and Library to temporarily move while £360k restoration works carried out. (4)
    5. 2019: Stockton Heath to reopen in September after refurbishment (8) Culcheth Library extends opening hours on Friday afternoon with help from volunteers. (12)
    6. 2018: Post office moves into Burtonwood Library. (1) Bewsey and Dallam Community Hub including library still being considered, although without Livewire funding. (5) £170k improvements to Stockton Heath Library.(10)
    7. 2017:  All libraries to remain open in some form (possibly some as volunteer), with none being entirely replaced by lockers as originally proposed.(1) Great Sankey Library to be fully integrated into leisure centre, with 4000 books.(5) Post office may move into Burtonwood Library. (10) Bewsey and Dallam Hub opening indefinitely delayed.  (11) £1 million for repairs, maintenance and investment, one-off £150,000 extra book fund in 2018, new libraries partnership group.(12)
    8. 2016: Opening hours cut by total of 58 hours per week over 9 libraries as “trial”. (1) Nine libraries to have reduced hours: LiveWire Trust blames reduction in usage. No reductions in contracted staffing but will need to work at any library in borough.  (5) 5 libraries to pass to volunteers, 2 to be closed/be book drops. Large scale job losses. Warrington Central to be moved into smaller retail unit: counted as seven under threat in total (9)
    9. 2015: £16m collocated leisure centre/heritage/health/library planned for Great Sankey. (6)
    10. 2012: 11/1/12 Warrington Cultural Charitable Trust board members vacancies advertised6/1/12 Grappenhall Library taken over by volunteers eight months after it was closed: group: Friends of Grappenhall Library
    11. 2011 Confimed: 2 libraries withdrawn and 1 mobile library confirmed as closed . More info hereJournals stopped also, £25k off staff. £10k off reference. Libraries may move to being run by a Trust, £500k to be found through this or cuts.
  9. Warwickshire
    1. 2024: £372k LIF grant for new Mobile for those with additional/more complex needs (3)
    2. 2023: Warwick Library being refurbished. (4) mobile library timetable changed in preparation for two new electric mobile libraries in 2024  (10)  New electric van for home library service (11)
    3. 2020: Service dependent on 1,000 volunteers. 41% budget cut since since 2013. 149 out of of 280 full time equivalent staff lost in same period. (1) Kenilworth Library refurbished. (11)
    4. 2019: Children’s fines removed. (3)
    5. 2017: Stratford Library refurbished (6) £100k cut, Sunday opening at Nuneaton, Rugby and Leamington again threatened. (12)
    6. 2016: £100k cut; all Sunday opening to cease; reduced jobs; cut to admin and mobile libraries.   (1) Alcester Library closed: library services move to co-located building with “Town Council, Roman Alcester Museum, a range of voluntary organisations, council services and police reporting services” (1) Southam Library opens (part of £12.4m development project) (1) £4.1m budget (-52.9% since 2009/10) (3) Therefore Southam and Alcester Libraries opened in new buildings. Council decided to keep Sunday opening hours (source: email from council). Police offer front of counter services in several libraries. (10)
    7. 2015: Volunteer library issues halved (down 46%) since leaving council control. (6)
    8. 2014: No closures 2014/15 (original plan was for nine) (2).
    9. 2013; Book lending vending machine to be installed at George Eliot Hospital (12/2/13) Free computer access for one hour per day for members, unlimited if machines not busy. (11/2/13) Southam Library to close, with library moving into co-location with many other council services (4). 2 out of 5 mobile libraries closed. £2m cut in libraries budget since 2011.  Further £95k cut by March 2014.
    10. 2012. 7 under threat plus 1 (Kingsbury) closed and 5 (Bidford, Binley Woods, Dordon, Kineton, Studley) to volunteers. 2 mobile libraries under threat (27/11/12). Bidford Library now run by volunteers (25/4/12). Cuts in opening hours from April 1st12 branches to be volunteer-run by end of April. 16 libraries opening hours decided on basis of public vote between two choices, 9000 responses received (19.1.12). Kingsbury Library closed (29/3/12). Warwick Library has moved to Shire Hall (23/2/12)  (18.1.12). Kineton Library taken over by volunteers, the first of 12 to do so before April. Studley Library will close at end of March, with volunteer-run library (funded by parish council and a few others) opening in Village Hall with 30 volunteers in April (10/2/12). Binley Woods Libray closed (4/3/12).
    11. 2011: 16 (out of 34) under threat. List of proposals for each of the 16 branches under threat.  30%/ £2m cut from £7.4m budget over three years: £2m already cuts since 2006, staffing already cut by 63 FTE 24%), a further50 full-time and up to 70 other library jobs to be lost.Of 16 libraries under threat, 6 currently have volunteer business plans, the others may be converted into “a dance school or nursery”.  Council has said it will charge to train volunteers at £80 per hour after free grace period.  Bulkington Library to be run by volunteers “in weeks” (28.12.11).  Harbury and Kineton libraries will not be council-run from March 2012.  Harbury volunteers will receive £8k grant in order to seed library/cafe.  Kineton will be taken over by parish council for 8 hours per week2 (out of 5) mobile libraries to be cut£100k to be given to groups taking over libraries, Statistics of usage/cost in table/chart form in addition to closing libraries “opening hours at Whitnash library could be cut from 45 hours a week to 16, and from 51 hours a week to 35 at Warwick and Kenilworth libraries, with hours cut from 56 to 50 at Leamington.“;  special county map of closures here.; Mobile library services merge with Solihull.;Computer users chargedBidford, Henley and Kineton will be volunteer-run with parish council support.
    12. Groups: Bulkington Community Library.
  10. West Berkshire
    1. 2022: Thatcham Library to be refurbished. (5)
    2. 2020: Town Council reduces subsidy to Newbury Library (2)
    3. 2017: Library closures threatened reduced to 1 library (Wash Common) and 1 mobile: staff to be largely replaced with volunteers in other threatened libraries, with all parish/town councils asked for £1 donation per resident.(1) £580k cut confirmed: paid staffing budget to be halved. (2) Theale Library reopens after successful library campaign to save it. (10)
    4. 2016: 3 week consultation includes cuts to libraries.  (1) 5 or more out of 10 libraries (inc. mobile) may close. (2) Confirmed that 7 out of 9 libraries under threat (Wash Common, Burghfield Common, Hungerford, Lambourn, Pangbourne, Theale and Mortimer). (2) 8 libraries and 2 mobile libraries under threat, leaving just 1 central branch (previously 7 libraries reported as under threat) (2) Six libraries given temporary reprieve (cut reduced in first year by £475k): Theale and Wash Common not included in reprieve.  (3)
    5. 2015: Burghfield Common Library to close. One of two mobile libraries to close. (10)
    6. 2013: Cut of 34 hours opening per week spread over 7 libraries (Newbury and Theale unchanges as previous cuts there) representing average of around 14% cut in hours. £175k cut of total budget of £1,6m over two years.  More opening hours cuts expected in 2015/16. Consultation until 13th December.
    7. 2012: Newbury Library hours to be cut three hours per week to cut £15k p.a. from budget.
    8. 2011: £200k cut.
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