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Another Libraries Consultation...

Northamptonshire County Council has come up with another new plan to reorganise the library service and there's a new Public Consultation...
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We have known for some months that Oundle Library will continue to be part of the County Council’s statutory service, and for that we are extremely grateful.

But there are other libraries around the county which are facing new challenges. Either they have been unexpectedly ear-marked for closure when previously they thought they were safe. Or they’ve been offered different terms/ arrangements to stay open.

In this new public consultation respondents are asked which library they use regularly, and are then free to comment on the proposals being considered for any one of the libraries listed. So, for example, you might regularly use Oundle Library but occasionally visit Earls Barton and Thrapston and want to express your views on the plans being considered for those libraries.

Each library has its own questionnaire because this is not a one-size-fits-all plan and there are so many different options being considered.

The online questionnaire is very straightforward and easy to understand, and it takes about 5 minutes to complete. You should feel free to comment on the proposals for any of the libraries you know or use. Just remember you’ll need to complete a different questionnaire for each library.

It’s also worth noting that none of us can be sure that the future of any library is safe in the long-term. Northamptonshire will soon be run by two Unitary Authorities, and no-one knows what their budgets or priorities will be in the years ahead.

So, if you care about the library service in Northamptonshire please take a few moments to ‘have your say’. In 2017 the huge response to the public consultation about libraries put a spanner in the wheels of NCCs plans and forced them to reconsider. The County Council (or Unitary Authority) will only know what residents think if we take the time to tell them!

You can find the outline proposal for NCC’s new plans for libraries here.

And the consultation questionnaire here.