Cabinet Meeting 5 April 2012

The cabinet meeting of Thursday 5 April 2012 will make decisions about the ‘new’ strategy for library services.  The meeting will start at 10am and the proposed venue is the Council Chamber – Shire Hall, Gloucester.

Jo Grills has confirmed that the agenda item for libraries is:

“to take a decision as to the future Library Strategy for Gloucestershire, taking into account inter alia the feedback from the consultation on the draft Strategy and having due regard to the statutory equality needs”

The meeting will be open to the public so if you are able to attend, contact Shire Hall about ticket arrangements (Tel: 01452 425000)

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2 Responses to Cabinet Meeting 5 April 2012

  1. Trevor Craig says:

    You cannot reason with stupidity sadly. You have all done a fantastic job over there and have inspired a lot of other groups to not take the library cuts lying down. You have to keep going because it isn’t over until they try and board up the libraries. A lot can change between then and now.

  2. I’ve supported the Friends of Gloucestershire Libraries campaign for about a year. It’s been utterly brain scrambling and I would not have been capable of following matters through to court, in the amazing way that FoGL core team has done.

    However, we have to work with the world as it is. My local library is Bourton on the Water: if it can open for 12 staffed hours a week instead of 3.5 hours, that’s better. If it also becomes an easy access point for public services, that’s great.

    ..If it moves into a space half the size of the present cubby hole, that will be difficult. LIbrary users will have to get used to pre-ordering books from the Online Catalogue. Not impossible.

    We can’t keep fighting GCC: it has too much bullying power. Democracy is finished in Gloucestershire. I don’t want to see any more of my friends with health damaged and careers at risk because of the stress of trying to stand up to GCC. We taxpayers must find more subtle methods. We shouldn’t have to, but the point is to win the war not every battle.

    Good negotiations start when participants find points of agreement. Regardless of previous actions or statements by organisations or individuals.

    It should be easy enough to agree that we all want a Library Service that meets its users’ needs and which can take advantage of modern technologies.
    I believe the library service should also draw on different funding sources.

    I’m very keen to support the proposal for a Mobile Library with Public Services.
    – I’ve suggested a Magnificent Mobile project designed to increase its usage, with costs shared among council, public services and community minded businesses and organisations.
    – Hospitals, air ambulances and schools can’t cope without support groups. It’s all shamefully wrong but it’s the real world. Libraries must get organised along the same lines.
    – Victorian philanthropists paid for many good works including libraries. In some cases the money was dirty. But the money did good things. Since rich = bad in the UK these days, let’s see if these outcasts can rehabilitate themselves by pouring money where it’ll do good. Developers, supermarkets and other large companies with image problems are ahead of the game: they have budgets for social responsibility… What do you want for your library? Who’re you gonna call? Because – let’s be clear – your council and your national government have other priorities.

    I’m equally keen to support serious development of Online Library services.
    – A lot of access problems (not all) can be solved by hardware and training given to disadvantaged people; the groups are identified; funding can be part GCC, part donation.
    – If Gloucestershire’s remaining libraries are to squeeze into smaller premises, users must get the habit of online ordering. Many people do it for films, groceries and much other shopping. LIbrary service must maintain a good delivery system.
    – Thinking about isolated people, I hope Library Clubs can continue. I also suggested ideas for online community activity (eg reviews and recommendations, so people can be involved in choosing library stock)
    – Young people gravitate to electronic media. GCC online library service must be well made and up to date. Right now it’s limited and clunky to use. But children and young adults are the people whose literacy and job prospects we most want to support. Don’t we?

    Of course you can call me names and shred my ideas. But I don’t give a twisted d*mn for anybody’s politics: I joined FoGL to help stop our library service being destroyed, and I’m staying to try to help it adapt.

    Until you get elected to Gloucestershire County Council, you can’t stop what it does to our future. I don’t understand why GCC behaves so arrogantly to its taxpayers… It just does… But if meanwhile we can put our (justifiable) fury aside and show overwhelming goodwill, it might just turn out that GCC can’t do anything except follow our lead.

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