Have your say on massive cutbacks to Hampshire libraries

A mobile library in use

A mobile library in use

First published in News
Last updated
Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Senior Reporter

LIBRARY users are to be asked what they think of plans to change services in light of massive cutbacks to county council services.

Some branches in Hampshire are to lose paid staff and 100 stops deemed unviable face the chop as the authority bids to shave off 12 per cent from its budget.

Under plans to save £130,000, the five-strong fleet of mobile libraries will be reduced to three by next year.

But the service, which takes library books to isolated rural areas, nursing homes and the housebound, will also be slashing stops by nearly a third.

Those under threat include three in Fareham, six in Eastleigh, eight in the Romsey area, ten in Winchester and 26 in the New Forest.

As reported, this comes on top of threats to three libraries which are expected to shed their staff, to save £50,000, including 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.

The transfer of these two libraries to local community groups has been very successful, say county council bosses.

The opening hours at both these libraries have increased since their transfer to the local community, with Stanmore’s book issues increasing by 14 per cent and North Baddesley’s by 18 per cent. Views are also being sought on a review of the least-used mobile library stops.

The consultation runs until Friday, May 2. To take part in this public consultation visit hants.gov.uk/library and complete online form or email library.customers comments@hants.gov.uk.

Alternatively consultation forms are available at Milford on Sea library and are being given out to mobile library customers.

If your local group or organisation is interested in exploring the opportunity to take over full responsibility for Milford on Sea library please contact Alec Kennedy, Head of Library Operations, Library Headquarters, Units 5 and 6 Moorside Place, Moorside Road, Winchester, SO23 7FZ, or email alec.kennedy@hants.gov.uk.

Comments (6)

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2:26pm Mon 17 Feb 14

befriendly says...

So we can form our own opinions how about the council giving us some details, like how many people use the service and how much it costs as while I'd like the service to remain free and open I might change my mind should I discover just how much it costs to keep one user supplied with free books. I buy mine from charity shops and return them to be sold again.
So we can form our own opinions how about the council giving us some details, like how many people use the service and how much it costs as while I'd like the service to remain free and open I might change my mind should I discover just how much it costs to keep one user supplied with free books. I buy mine from charity shops and return them to be sold again. befriendly
  • Score: 0

4:24pm Mon 17 Feb 14

Huffter says...

befriendly wrote:
So we can form our own opinions how about the council giving us some details, like how many people use the service and how much it costs as while I'd like the service to remain free and open I might change my mind should I discover just how much it costs to keep one user supplied with free books. I buy mine from charity shops and return them to be sold again.
It's not just about supplying people with free books to borrow, Libraries are a source of reference for local and national information.
[quote][p][bold]befriendly[/bold] wrote: So we can form our own opinions how about the council giving us some details, like how many people use the service and how much it costs as while I'd like the service to remain free and open I might change my mind should I discover just how much it costs to keep one user supplied with free books. I buy mine from charity shops and return them to be sold again.[/p][/quote]It's not just about supplying people with free books to borrow, Libraries are a source of reference for local and national information. Huffter
  • Score: 5

5:54pm Mon 17 Feb 14

bcb567 says...

What do libraries do? They support all sections of the community. They provide books for babies and children, a place for parents to meet to share the pleasures of reading with activities such as story time; they extend the stock of a school library enabling children to explore a wide range of authors and genres, to obtain further books in series that their school library may not stock, to extend their learning with additional resources linked to curriculum topics and to allow them to explore and discover new interests and hobbies; they support adults in their reading for pleasure, for work and for education (both those with low literacy skills and avid able readers - charity shops do not have the same range of books as you find in a library). Libraries help people to study and obtain further qualifications to improve both current and future job prospects. They have a range of resources including fiction and non-fiction books and magazines, ebooks, DVDs, CDs, large-print books, maps, IT equipment, rooms for local groups to use, a space for the local community, a place where you are not a consumer and do not have to buy anything. Professional staff ensure that the stock is balanced, uncensored and have the skills and expertise to help people use the IT facilities, and to find and use the information they require according to their needs. Libraries link with the community and a variety of organisations within it, and those most affected by the closure of a library are likely to be the young, elderly and most disadvantaged members of our society. Libraries are also linked to improved literacy and well-being; when you close a library, it isn't just a room of books you are losing, it has a much greater impact than that. An impact that not only has an immediate effect but that has repercussions for future generations.
What do libraries do? They support all sections of the community. They provide books for babies and children, a place for parents to meet to share the pleasures of reading with activities such as story time; they extend the stock of a school library enabling children to explore a wide range of authors and genres, to obtain further books in series that their school library may not stock, to extend their learning with additional resources linked to curriculum topics and to allow them to explore and discover new interests and hobbies; they support adults in their reading for pleasure, for work and for education (both those with low literacy skills and avid able readers - charity shops do not have the same range of books as you find in a library). Libraries help people to study and obtain further qualifications to improve both current and future job prospects. They have a range of resources including fiction and non-fiction books and magazines, ebooks, DVDs, CDs, large-print books, maps, IT equipment, rooms for local groups to use, a space for the local community, a place where you are not a consumer and do not have to buy anything. Professional staff ensure that the stock is balanced, uncensored and have the skills and expertise to help people use the IT facilities, and to find and use the information they require according to their needs. Libraries link with the community and a variety of organisations within it, and those most affected by the closure of a library are likely to be the young, elderly and most disadvantaged members of our society. Libraries are also linked to improved literacy and well-being; when you close a library, it isn't just a room of books you are losing, it has a much greater impact than that. An impact that not only has an immediate effect but that has repercussions for future generations. bcb567
  • Score: 2

8:26pm Mon 17 Feb 14

forest hump says...

bcb567 wrote:
What do libraries do? They support all sections of the community. They provide books for babies and children, a place for parents to meet to share the pleasures of reading with activities such as story time; they extend the stock of a school library enabling children to explore a wide range of authors and genres, to obtain further books in series that their school library may not stock, to extend their learning with additional resources linked to curriculum topics and to allow them to explore and discover new interests and hobbies; they support adults in their reading for pleasure, for work and for education (both those with low literacy skills and avid able readers - charity shops do not have the same range of books as you find in a library). Libraries help people to study and obtain further qualifications to improve both current and future job prospects. They have a range of resources including fiction and non-fiction books and magazines, ebooks, DVDs, CDs, large-print books, maps, IT equipment, rooms for local groups to use, a space for the local community, a place where you are not a consumer and do not have to buy anything. Professional staff ensure that the stock is balanced, uncensored and have the skills and expertise to help people use the IT facilities, and to find and use the information they require according to their needs. Libraries link with the community and a variety of organisations within it, and those most affected by the closure of a library are likely to be the young, elderly and most disadvantaged members of our society. Libraries are also linked to improved literacy and well-being; when you close a library, it isn't just a room of books you are losing, it has a much greater impact than that. An impact that not only has an immediate effect but that has repercussions for future generations.
Alright, apart from that, what have the libraries ever done for us.
[quote][p][bold]bcb567[/bold] wrote: What do libraries do? They support all sections of the community. They provide books for babies and children, a place for parents to meet to share the pleasures of reading with activities such as story time; they extend the stock of a school library enabling children to explore a wide range of authors and genres, to obtain further books in series that their school library may not stock, to extend their learning with additional resources linked to curriculum topics and to allow them to explore and discover new interests and hobbies; they support adults in their reading for pleasure, for work and for education (both those with low literacy skills and avid able readers - charity shops do not have the same range of books as you find in a library). Libraries help people to study and obtain further qualifications to improve both current and future job prospects. They have a range of resources including fiction and non-fiction books and magazines, ebooks, DVDs, CDs, large-print books, maps, IT equipment, rooms for local groups to use, a space for the local community, a place where you are not a consumer and do not have to buy anything. Professional staff ensure that the stock is balanced, uncensored and have the skills and expertise to help people use the IT facilities, and to find and use the information they require according to their needs. Libraries link with the community and a variety of organisations within it, and those most affected by the closure of a library are likely to be the young, elderly and most disadvantaged members of our society. Libraries are also linked to improved literacy and well-being; when you close a library, it isn't just a room of books you are losing, it has a much greater impact than that. An impact that not only has an immediate effect but that has repercussions for future generations.[/p][/quote]Alright, apart from that, what have the libraries ever done for us. forest hump
  • Score: 0

9:07pm Mon 17 Feb 14

bcb567 says...

Not sure what you mean by "us" ...

Libraries are a community facility, providing services for the whole local community (regardless of whether said community chooses to use them). To use the argument "one" doesn't use the library therefore why should the council fund it, would be like me saying that I don't use my local council-maintained running track or the skate park in my area therefore they shouldn't be funded by the council. Or the meals-on-wheels service or allotments or any one of a number of things I've never used.

I think the (not exclusive) list above shows some of what libraries have done for a large sector of the community (did you know that in 2013 there were over 288 million visits to public libraries? - that's rather a lot of people making quite a lot of use) ...

If by "us" you mean personally ... then perhaps not everyone does need or use their public library. Some people can afford all the books they ever want to read, some people don't like reading, some people have internet access and can pay for downloading films, books, music, etc. Some people can attend universities regardless of the costs. But the argument that they are a community facility still stands regardless of individual personal use.

There is also the aspect that everybody benefits from a literate and educated society ... even those who don't use libraries. People who have higher literacy levels are less likely to be unemployed (and thus not using taxes on benefits), their health is likely to be better (so less of a drain on medical facilities which are paid for out of taxes again), their children are more likely to have higher literacy and education levels ... and these children are the people who will be running the country, businesses, councils, in the future. They will be our future scientists, entrepreneurs, educators, innovators .... investing in a comprehensive public library system is investing in the literacy and education of society.
Not sure what you mean by "us" ... Libraries are a community facility, providing services for the whole local community (regardless of whether said community chooses to use them). To use the argument "one" doesn't use the library therefore why should the council fund it, would be like me saying that I don't use my local council-maintained running track or the skate park in my area therefore they shouldn't be funded by the council. Or the meals-on-wheels service or allotments or any one of a number of things I've never used. I think the (not exclusive) list above shows some of what libraries have done for a large sector of the community (did you know that in 2013 there were over 288 million visits to public libraries? - that's rather a lot of people making quite a lot of use) ... If by "us" you mean personally ... then perhaps not everyone does need or use their public library. Some people can afford all the books they ever want to read, some people don't like reading, some people have internet access and can pay for downloading films, books, music, etc. Some people can attend universities regardless of the costs. But the argument that they are a community facility still stands regardless of individual personal use. There is also the aspect that everybody benefits from a literate and educated society ... even those who don't use libraries. People who have higher literacy levels are less likely to be unemployed (and thus not using taxes on benefits), their health is likely to be better (so less of a drain on medical facilities which are paid for out of taxes again), their children are more likely to have higher literacy and education levels ... and these children are the people who will be running the country, businesses, councils, in the future. They will be our future scientists, entrepreneurs, educators, innovators .... investing in a comprehensive public library system is investing in the literacy and education of society. bcb567
  • Score: 0

1:32pm Sun 23 Feb 14

forest hump says...

bcb567 wrote:
Not sure what you mean by "us" ...

Libraries are a community facility, providing services for the whole local community (regardless of whether said community chooses to use them). To use the argument "one" doesn't use the library therefore why should the council fund it, would be like me saying that I don't use my local council-maintained running track or the skate park in my area therefore they shouldn't be funded by the council. Or the meals-on-wheels service or allotments or any one of a number of things I've never used.

I think the (not exclusive) list above shows some of what libraries have done for a large sector of the community (did you know that in 2013 there were over 288 million visits to public libraries? - that's rather a lot of people making quite a lot of use) ...

If by "us" you mean personally ... then perhaps not everyone does need or use their public library. Some people can afford all the books they ever want to read, some people don't like reading, some people have internet access and can pay for downloading films, books, music, etc. Some people can attend universities regardless of the costs. But the argument that they are a community facility still stands regardless of individual personal use.

There is also the aspect that everybody benefits from a literate and educated society ... even those who don't use libraries. People who have higher literacy levels are less likely to be unemployed (and thus not using taxes on benefits), their health is likely to be better (so less of a drain on medical facilities which are paid for out of taxes again), their children are more likely to have higher literacy and education levels ... and these children are the people who will be running the country, businesses, councils, in the future. They will be our future scientists, entrepreneurs, educators, innovators .... investing in a comprehensive public library system is investing in the literacy and education of society.
It was a joke! Did you ever watch "The life of Brian"?
[quote][p][bold]bcb567[/bold] wrote: Not sure what you mean by "us" ... Libraries are a community facility, providing services for the whole local community (regardless of whether said community chooses to use them). To use the argument "one" doesn't use the library therefore why should the council fund it, would be like me saying that I don't use my local council-maintained running track or the skate park in my area therefore they shouldn't be funded by the council. Or the meals-on-wheels service or allotments or any one of a number of things I've never used. I think the (not exclusive) list above shows some of what libraries have done for a large sector of the community (did you know that in 2013 there were over 288 million visits to public libraries? - that's rather a lot of people making quite a lot of use) ... If by "us" you mean personally ... then perhaps not everyone does need or use their public library. Some people can afford all the books they ever want to read, some people don't like reading, some people have internet access and can pay for downloading films, books, music, etc. Some people can attend universities regardless of the costs. But the argument that they are a community facility still stands regardless of individual personal use. There is also the aspect that everybody benefits from a literate and educated society ... even those who don't use libraries. People who have higher literacy levels are less likely to be unemployed (and thus not using taxes on benefits), their health is likely to be better (so less of a drain on medical facilities which are paid for out of taxes again), their children are more likely to have higher literacy and education levels ... and these children are the people who will be running the country, businesses, councils, in the future. They will be our future scientists, entrepreneurs, educators, innovators .... investing in a comprehensive public library system is investing in the literacy and education of society.[/p][/quote]It was a joke! Did you ever watch "The life of Brian"? forest hump
  • Score: 0

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