Have say on mobile library cuts

Derbyshire County Hall
Derbyshire County Hall

Residents in Ilkeston are being asked for their views on the future of Derbyshire County Council’s mobile library service in the second stage of a consultation on budget cuts.

The council has to cut £157 million over the next five years and is looking at making changes to services.

Its mobile fleet, which serves Ilkeston, currently consists of two larger capacity vehicles and eight smaller standard mobile libraries. It costs the authority £720,000 a year to run the service, which currently employs 26 people – equivalent to 18 full time staff.

Thousands of residents took part in the first stage of the mobile library consultation earlier this year and gave their feedback on a range of options, including to stop the service completely, withdraw some mobile vehicles or to encourage community groups to provide the service.

Their comments have now been used to develop a more detailed second stage of consultation outlining a proposal to maintain two standard mobile libraries working to a monthly timetable.

Derbyshire County Council cabinet member for health and communities Councillor Dave Allen said: “The option to keep two vehicles received the greatest support and many respondents said they’d rather see the frequency of the service reduced than not have one at all.”

The consultation runs until Saturday, August 9.

Questionnaires are available in all county council branch and mobile libraries and GP surgeries or can be completed online at www.derbyshire.gov.uk/mobilelibraries