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Massive response to libraries consultation as part of wide ranging review.

Published Thursday, 06 October 2011

Over 5,500 people returned a survey as part of Southwark Council’s consultation in the future of the library service in the borough.

The huge response to the consultation has been hailed as 'highly encouraging' by the council's culture chief this week.  

Over the summer there were 13 public meetings in libraries across the borough, as well as discussions at community council presentations, to discuss the future of the service with residents.  

Cllr Veronica Ward, cabinet member for culture, leisure, sport and the Olympics at Southwark Council, said:  

"This summer we've been going out into the community to ask residents and library users what they think of our library service, ahead of the wide ranging review that we announced earlier in the year. The scale of the response so far has been greatly encouraging and I believe it reflects how much our libraries are cherished in Southwark. It's vital that we maintain a high quality library service in the face of massive budget savings this year and in the years ahead, and I'm heartened by the levels of engagement this consultation has produced so far."  

The review comes as the borough's newest library, £14m Canada Water library in Rotherhithe, is set to open (late November).  

Councillor Ward, added:

"We're really excited by the Canada Water library, which is set to be a stunning example of what libraries can achieve, as well as being so much more, being at the heart of a public space that will form part of a buzzing new town centre."  

Background Information

The complete findings of the review will be presented in a formal report to Cabinet on 18 October to inform the members in their decision making on the future options for libraries.  

The council has held 13 public meetings in libraries across the borough, and 5568 people completed survey forms at libraries and online.  

The survey asked about the ways in which people currently use the library service and asked for opinions and preferences for various options that could potentially save money.  

For more information please visit the Canada Water library pages.



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