|Caterham-on-the-Hill library threatened with closure|
|Friday, 30 September 2011 12:00|
Caterham-on-the-Hill library may face closure if a pilot scheme for community-run libraries is not deemed to be a success.
Surrey County Council ('SCC') has agreed plans to allow communities to take over the running of ten other Surrey libraries including Warlingham Library. The county council will continue to provide the building, stock, computer equipment and free Wi-Fi. The ten were ranked lowest in a league table of libraries as part of a public value review.
On Tuesday 27th September SCC's Cabinet agreed that the ten pilot community-run libraries operate for the financial year 2012-13 so their success can be assessed. Only then will the council consider extending the offer to nine more that are Ash, Caterham-on-the-Hill, Frimley Green, Hersham, Horsley, Knaphill, Lightwater, Shepperton and West Byfleet. After the Cabinet meeting on 27th September, Denise Saliagopoulos, SCC's Cabinet Member for Community Services and the 2012 Games, said: Today's decision means we are step closer to fulfilling our aim of keeping all 52 of Surrey's libraries open, while focusing resources and making best use of technologies such as e-books.
"We have been greatly encouraged by the response we have had to the plans to give people the freedom to tailor their local library to meet local needs."
Jenny Meineck is a supporter of Surrey Libraries Action Movement ('SLAM') and a Friend of Ewell Court Library, one of the first ten libraries that has to find volunteers to take over the running of the library from March 2012. She said: "SLAM is working on behalf of all the threatened libraries to try and stop the closures. We do not agree with removal of paid staff and would like a full public consultation."
To see what actions SLAM are taking visit www.savesurreylibraries.org