Friday, 14 February 2014

Broomhill Library Action Group considers legal action to keep our library open


Yesterday the council announced its revised proposals for public libraries, following the Libraries Consultation which ended 10 January 2013. 

The original proposal for the Central Library and 11 Hub Libraries remains the same, with a further 5 "co-funded" libraries. The remaining 11 (plus Tinsley when its lease expires in 2 years) will be run as "independent" libraries with funding available for buildings, etc, for which the libraries can bid. The funding is £262,000 per year for 3 years. The council were initially looking to save just over £800,000 per year. Council library staff will no longer be employed.

This means that Broomhill library will cease to exist in its present form, but will only remain open if run by volunteers. Although Broomhill Library Action Group (BLAG) asked that independent library status be considered for Broomhill, this was only presented as a last resort, born out of a desperate attempt to keep our library open. In its present form, BLAG does not have the capability or resources to run this library without the help of the wider community.

We firmly believe that not only Broomhill, but all the libraries should be kept open as part of Sheffield City Council's statutory library provision. We have fought very hard to keep this status and we are continuing to fight against these proposals.

We are proposing a legal action against the council which we want to discuss with local people at a public meeting on Saturday 15 Feb 10.30am at Beacon Methodist Church, Fulwood Rd, Broomhill. We are the only library group in the city to be considering such legal action.

We will also be discussing the implications of the council's decision. Please come and give your opinions.

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