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Help shape library services

Keeping libraries at the heart of communities

Remaining relevant to communities continues to be a significant challenge for libraries as more and more people are going online to read and find out information. At the same time, pressure on county council budgets has never been greater. 

Staffordshire’s Library Service is continuing to transform so that it remains relevant in the digital age, maintains a presence at the heart of our communities and is affordable for the future.

Over 3,500 people that took part in the public consultation held last year about how we can make that happen. As part of the consultation, over a dozen community groups expressed an interest in taking on one of the four libraries that were identified for community management and over 400 people offered to volunteer at their local library. Thank you for your support.

Thanks to everyone who took part.

The next steps will be taken gradually to ensure the changes are made effectively.

1) From September 2018 - Cheadle Library, Penkridge Library, Eccleshall Library and Clayton Library will be offered through a  formal procurement process to become a Community Managed Library (CML).

Having the community at the heart of making decisions about the library will help revitalise them and reduce the number of fully-funded county council libraries. We will encourage applications from community groups during this time. 

There are already 22 libraries in Staffordshire that are CMLs – where the library is managed and delivered by community groups who manage a team of volunteers. Find out more about CMLs in Staffordshire.

2) In December 2018 – A panel of experts will evaluate the applications.

3) From January 2019 – We will support the community organisations chosen to run Cheadle, Penkridge, Eccleshall or Clayton Library with a comprehensive training programme

4) After April 2019 –The community organisations will take over the day to day management and delivery

5) From April 2019 – Implement the revised timetable for the Mobile Library Service to prioritise visits to isolated communities with the greatest need. PDF Document Where the Mobile Library will stop from April 2019 (323 KB).

6)After July 2019 – New self-service technology will be trialled at Stafford Library to allow registered users access to the building outside core hours.

We are also contacting and training well over 400 people who expressed an interest in volunteering at their local library.

Want to get in touch? Please drop us a line at connectedlibraries@staffordshire.gov.uk.

You can read the Cabinet paper here.

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