According to an article on This is Gloucestershire on 26/08/10 Gloucestershire councillor Jeremy Hilton fears that some of the libraries in the county may be under threat following an announcement that the number of people visiting the library “has fallen by 50,000 year-on-year. Council bosses say this is in despite of their efforts to provide new services. The Friends of Cheltenham Libraries are concerned that these figures may not be truly representative of the full picture because it only “refers to people who use a service, such as borrowing a book, CD, DVD or using a computer” It does not include the use of online services (such as placing reserves on books online which would reduce the number of times a user needs to enter the library) and it does not include those who use services that do not require the use of a library card such as reading the newspapers and periodicals. The Echo reported that whilst overall footfall had decreased, in some libraries that had undergone refurbishment, such as Cirencester and Brockworth, the number of visits had risen significantly.
This indicates that libraries need more not less investment. Perhaps the council should consider whether this drop in library use is due to a lack of investment rather than a lack of interest from the public. Cuts have to made somewhere but we believe libraries should not be seen as an easy target.