Monday, 21 February 2011

New Library hours across Cornwall

Cornwall Council has announced the new opening hours for libraries across Cornwall - as promised last week.

The new hours for Launceston Library as from April 18th will be

Monday 9.30-5.00
Tuesday 9.30-6.30
Wednesday 9.30-5.00
Thursday Closed
Friday 9.30-5.00
Saturday 10.00-1.00

Overall this is a loss of 2.5 hours of opening each week. That is very regrettable and the loss of after work opening three days each week is bad news. But it is good that no libraries have been closed at this stage and that the Council has listened to local concerns over the original proposals to switch the closed day and only open at 10am in the morning.

I hardly think that the overall loss of more than 90 library hours each week can be described as 'an exciting new service' as the Council's Orwellian phraseology puts it. Management changes are hardly exciting, nothing being done is new and the level of service has dropped.

What is not made clear in the Council's press release is that the future of our libraries is still far from safe. The Cabinet member has repeatedly said that no library in Cornwall is safe beyond March 2012 and there is still no detail about how they plan to save more than half a million pounds next year.

UPDATE: The BBC Cornwall website covers the story here.

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