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Library partnership plan for village

Posted onPosted on 26th Mar

Nottinghamshire County Council is considering plans to develop a new community partnership library in Annesley Woodhouse.

The council is in discussions with Ashfield Community Radio and Media Training (ACRMT) to open the facility in the Acacia Centre.

It is hoped this would provide better access to and usage of the library.

In November, the council announced it must make £154m budget savings over the next three years due to challenging budget cuts across the authority.

Library managers said they could achieve £1m savings for the authority, partly through an innovative plan to preserve smaller libraries through a community partnership approach, along with a modernisation programme.

Coun John Knight, committee chairman for culture, said: “We are totally committed to our libraries service. In the context of the difficult budget decisions we are having to make across the board as a county council, we need to look at increasingly innovative and creative ways to run our library services – while still offering people a fairer deal.

“The proposal for Annesley Woodhouse is that it is ideally placed to be established as a community partnership library through co-locating with ACRMT at the Acacia Centre.

“However, what works for one community, may not work for another. We said at the outset when we announced our budget proposals that we would not have a ‘one size fits all’ approach to community partnership libraries.”

Annesley Woodhouse Library is sited within a village hall and is open for eight hours a week, issuing around 8,000 items and has around 3,350 visitors a year. ACRMT is looking to accommodate the new library within the current office space of the Acacia Centre.

The chair of trustees for ACRMT, Georgina Streets said: “ACRMT are really excited at the proposal of working with the county council to have a community partnership library in the Acacia Centre, this will be beneficial for the centre as it will bring new visitors but likewise we will endeavour to encourage more people to use the library service. Our aim is to make the Acacia Centre the hub of the community, having the library here will help achieve that aim.”

The county council would need to invest £70,000 in the scheme, but ACRMT would host the library, provide a managed group of library volunteers and increase the hours that the library is open.

The item will be discussed at the Culture Committee’s next meeting on April 1.