Fulwood, Lostock Hall and Bamber Bridge libraries now know more about their futures.Advertisement
Closed under the previous Labour administration at Lancashire County Council a pledge was made by the Tories to reverse the closures.
Of the county’s 73 libraries there were 26 due to close – including the ones in Preston and South Ribble.
A report to the county council’s cabinet explains the proposals for each of the closures – and reversing the decision for Fulwood and Lostock Hall won’t be quick.
It outlines how Fulwood and Lostock Hall were very close to being sold, so ‘substantial re-instatement works would be needed’.
Extra time is needed to decide what to do with Bamber Bridge library, which is due to be transferred to First Bamber Bridge Scouts Association.
Read more: Fulwood Library will be re-opening after all
Cabinet member for community and cultural services councillor Peter Buckley said: “Libraries are a vital service at the heart of our communities, offering free access to books and information, as well as being a place where communities can get together.
“That is why we’re proposing to reopen libraries which were closed, as well as safeguarding full library services at six libraries which had been due to close or see the level of service reduced.
“A significant amount of activity will be needed to reopen the libraries which were closed. This will include building assessments and carrying out work to improve the condition of some buildings, recruiting and training staff, reconnecting ICT and other infrastructure, and reallocating book stock.
“Building surveys are already underway and the next step will be to produce a detailed timeline for libraries reopening. Whilst some require minimal work in order to reopen, at this stage we’re anticipating that most will reopen between this autumn and spring next year.”
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14 of Lancashire’s libraries are due to reopened in the coming months, nine of which will be operated by the county council.
The county council says where the library closure can’t be reversed they will look at alternative library provision in the area.
You can see the full cabinet report on the county council website and the cabinet meets on Thursday 13 July to consider the options.
What do you think about the library closures? Let us know your views in the comments below