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14 June 2016
New Library Consultation

Consultation on the Bedford Borough’s Library Service enters its Second Stage

Bedford Borough Council is working to develop a library strategy which will set out the vision for library services in the borough over the next few years. The library consultation process began earlier this year.

Cllr Sarah-Jayne Holland, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture, said: “Libraries across the UK have been subject to a period of unprecedented change in the last few years. Financial pressures on local authorities continue to influence library services, and Bedford Borough is no different. So, we want to make sure that residents are in the driving seat on this, and we will do all we can to ensure that we shape our service following their views and opinions.”

In the first stage of the consultation process, local residents were asked to share their views on how libraries are currently used; which services are most popular; and which services should be prioritised. This phase of consultation also provided an opportunity for residents to submit suggestions on how the Library Service could develop over the next few years in consideration of a reduced budget.

In total 3,071 responses to the public consultation questionnaire were received. As well as the questionnaires, the Council received written responses from a number of organisations who offered their views on the future of the Library Service.

The second stage of consultation will begin today on (Monday 13 June). The Council are now consulting on their Library Mission Statement, as well as providing the public with the opportunity to give their views on the four options that have been suggested during the first stage of consultation. All four options are detailed online.

The proposed options are by no means exclusive and Bedford Borough Council welcomes alternative suggestions on the development and delivery of the Borough’s Library Service. This second stage of consultation will run from 13th June - 29th July 2016 and responses from all people and organisations across Bedford Borough are welcome.

You can tell the Borough what you think in the following ways:

Online – complete an online response form at www.bedford.gov.uk/libraryconsultation

Email consultingbedford@bedford.gov.uk

Write to – Consulting Bedford, Borough Hall, Cauldwell Street, Bedford, MK42 9AP.

Comments received will be published.

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