Hampshire libraries ‘unsustainable’ under £900,000 of cuts

Daily Echo: Libraries ‘unsustainable’ under £900,000 of cuts Libraries ‘unsustainable’ under £900,000 of cuts

LIBRARY services in Hampshire will be left “unsustainable” after £900,000 of planned cuts, union bosses claim.

Jobs, mobile libraries and branches are facing the chop as part of swingeing £93million cuts to the county council’s budget.

County bosses say their hand has been forced by massive reductions in Government grants.

But Unison claim the cuts – which are three times more than originally planned – are unnecessary because the council is sitting on about £400million of reserves.

Steve Squibbs, a local Unison rep at Hythe Library, said: “If the cuts go ahead they will result in a service that is unsustainable as staff struggle to maintain a quality service for the public.”

As reported, libraries under threat of closure include Milford on Sea.

It is hoped volunteers will step forward as they did last year for libraries in North Baddesley and Stanmore but if no one comes forward the libraries face closure.

Mobile stops are to be slashed by nearly a third – with those under threat including three in Fareham, six in Eastleigh, eight in Romsey, ten in Winchester and 26 in the New Forest. The library outreach team, which promotes the use of the library service, is also to be disbanded and 27 full-time posts face the axe.

But Tory recreation and heritage chief Keith Chapman vowed to maintain library services in the face of declining financial support.

He said: “Hampshire’s library service has examined a number of ways it might make savings going forward, considering what changes would impact the least on customers, while protecting what people value and need most from the library service.

“These proposals are designed to maintain and deliver a high quality and flexible library service, enable the service to achieve the required savings and help make it more resilient in the future in the face of further Government grant reductions.”

Plans include increasing library assistant hours and investing in ebooks as well as self-service technology.

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11:27am Fri 11 Apr 14

sotonboy84 says...

I don't say this lightly but to an extent, aren't libraries a dying breed? You can buy books so cheaply these days and so many people buy digital books.

There will always be a need for libraries as they're used for research, studying and exploring but if funding is a threat then maybe it's best to close the smaller local libraries and focus on larger centralised libraries so funds can be directed to keep good libraries rather than sharing them out and having a handful of run down buildings that are open for a few hours a day.
I don't say this lightly but to an extent, aren't libraries a dying breed? You can buy books so cheaply these days and so many people buy digital books. There will always be a need for libraries as they're used for research, studying and exploring but if funding is a threat then maybe it's best to close the smaller local libraries and focus on larger centralised libraries so funds can be directed to keep good libraries rather than sharing them out and having a handful of run down buildings that are open for a few hours a day. sotonboy84
  • Score: -2

12:18pm Fri 11 Apr 14

djl197 says...

Being honest I thought the same way until I had children. My 2 children love the library, they spend over a hour reading, choosing books and we borrow them and return them and repeat.
Books are cheap but not cheap enough to buy 4 books a month * 2 children.
So the library has jumped up my list of things to keep open
Being honest I thought the same way until I had children. My 2 children love the library, they spend over a hour reading, choosing books and we borrow them and return them and repeat. Books are cheap but not cheap enough to buy 4 books a month * 2 children. So the library has jumped up my list of things to keep open djl197
  • Score: 19

12:52pm Fri 11 Apr 14

Charlie Bucket says...

sotonboy84 wrote:
I don't say this lightly but to an extent, aren't libraries a dying breed? You can buy books so cheaply these days and so many people buy digital books.

There will always be a need for libraries as they're used for research, studying and exploring but if funding is a threat then maybe it's best to close the smaller local libraries and focus on larger centralised libraries so funds can be directed to keep good libraries rather than sharing them out and having a handful of run down buildings that are open for a few hours a day.
Not sure why this is being downvoted. Actually, that's a lie. It's because it's an actual sensible comment about the story.
[quote][p][bold]sotonboy84[/bold] wrote: I don't say this lightly but to an extent, aren't libraries a dying breed? You can buy books so cheaply these days and so many people buy digital books. There will always be a need for libraries as they're used for research, studying and exploring but if funding is a threat then maybe it's best to close the smaller local libraries and focus on larger centralised libraries so funds can be directed to keep good libraries rather than sharing them out and having a handful of run down buildings that are open for a few hours a day.[/p][/quote]Not sure why this is being downvoted. Actually, that's a lie. It's because it's an actual sensible comment about the story. Charlie Bucket
  • Score: -4

1:07pm Fri 11 Apr 14

sotonboy84 says...

Charlie Bucket wrote:
sotonboy84 wrote:
I don't say this lightly but to an extent, aren't libraries a dying breed? You can buy books so cheaply these days and so many people buy digital books.

There will always be a need for libraries as they're used for research, studying and exploring but if funding is a threat then maybe it's best to close the smaller local libraries and focus on larger centralised libraries so funds can be directed to keep good libraries rather than sharing them out and having a handful of run down buildings that are open for a few hours a day.
Not sure why this is being downvoted. Actually, that's a lie. It's because it's an actual sensible comment about the story.
Probably by the same people that want their local libraries to stay open but don't want to do anything to help it!

I enjoy libraries, I always have and books are very important but if there isn't funding then compromises have to be made. Maybe some of the down voters could contribute their ideas. Of course they won't.
[quote][p][bold]Charlie Bucket[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]sotonboy84[/bold] wrote: I don't say this lightly but to an extent, aren't libraries a dying breed? You can buy books so cheaply these days and so many people buy digital books. There will always be a need for libraries as they're used for research, studying and exploring but if funding is a threat then maybe it's best to close the smaller local libraries and focus on larger centralised libraries so funds can be directed to keep good libraries rather than sharing them out and having a handful of run down buildings that are open for a few hours a day.[/p][/quote]Not sure why this is being downvoted. Actually, that's a lie. It's because it's an actual sensible comment about the story.[/p][/quote]Probably by the same people that want their local libraries to stay open but don't want to do anything to help it! I enjoy libraries, I always have and books are very important but if there isn't funding then compromises have to be made. Maybe some of the down voters could contribute their ideas. Of course they won't. sotonboy84
  • Score: -3

1:10pm Fri 11 Apr 14

sotonboy84 says...

djl197 wrote:
Being honest I thought the same way until I had children. My 2 children love the library, they spend over a hour reading, choosing books and we borrow them and return them and repeat.
Books are cheap but not cheap enough to buy 4 books a month * 2 children.
So the library has jumped up my list of things to keep open
I agree, I was at a library every day when I was young and borrowed more books that I could carry! In an ideal world they would all stay open but my suggestion was that if there simply isn't funding, it might be a good idea to direct the funding to bigger centralised libraries so the quality and opening times is much better then keeping a lot of smaller struggling libraries open.
[quote][p][bold]djl197[/bold] wrote: Being honest I thought the same way until I had children. My 2 children love the library, they spend over a hour reading, choosing books and we borrow them and return them and repeat. Books are cheap but not cheap enough to buy 4 books a month * 2 children. So the library has jumped up my list of things to keep open[/p][/quote]I agree, I was at a library every day when I was young and borrowed more books that I could carry! In an ideal world they would all stay open but my suggestion was that if there simply isn't funding, it might be a good idea to direct the funding to bigger centralised libraries so the quality and opening times is much better then keeping a lot of smaller struggling libraries open. sotonboy84
  • Score: 7

5:04am Sun 13 Apr 14

skeptik says...

Rated as a wealthy country on the world listings, it would appear the wealthier we get the less we can afford and the less we get for the 'savings' they tell us we enjoy. Vote me I will cut your taxes - how many days do we work for the state before we keep earnings? Easy to blame the poor and unemployed - smokescreen for where wealth is being horded. We look at how older and less able folk are being treated and talk of 'I'm alright Jack' whilst not taking note of the fact - all will end up in the old and less able club - of course many will save out of the part time minimum wage for their future - won't they?
Rated as a wealthy country on the world listings, it would appear the wealthier we get the less we can afford and the less we get for the 'savings' they tell us we enjoy. Vote me I will cut your taxes - how many days do we work for the state before we keep earnings? Easy to blame the poor and unemployed - smokescreen for where wealth is being horded. We look at how older and less able folk are being treated and talk of 'I'm alright Jack' whilst not taking note of the fact - all will end up in the old and less able club - of course many will save out of the part time minimum wage for their future - won't they? skeptik
  • Score: 0

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