in Burnham and Highbridge to benefit from new investment
in Burnham-On-Sea and Highbridge look set to benefit from new
investment by Somerset County Council.
new council strategy for libraries across Somerset - including
those in Burnham and Highbridge - was outlined to councillors
on Tuesday (December 4th) that will see 'community hubs' being
set up and a significant increase in funding for books.
Members of the County Council's Scrutiny Committee heard details
of a review of the service in which pilot schemes are to be set
up where public services will share space in libraries, and communities
will have a greater say in how their libraries are run.
strategy could deliver savings of more than £860,000 over
three years and possibly result in longer opening hours.
The broad strategy was supported by the campaign group Friends
of Somerset Libraries, whose Chairman, Peter Murphy, said: "I
am pleased that the Friends have engaged with this review and
I would say that the engagement has been constructive on both
Council's spending on books is normally £200,000, but will
be increased by an extra £250,000 over the next two years.
comes just days after the council
conceded that the cost of losing a judicial legal review into
an earlier plan to restructure part of Somerset's library service
was £200,000, as reported here.
The Cabinet Member responsible for Libraries, Cllr David Hall,
said on Tuesday: "We are living in tight financial times
and we should not lose sight of that. I believe this strategy
will both save money and create a library service fit for the
future. I am grateful for the involvement of all those people
who have taken the trouble to come forward and be part of this
new library strategy proposes that libraries should be provided
according to need, demand and value for money; that libraries
should be developed into community hubs; that libraries should
be responsible to, and supported by, their local communities.
Burnham-On-Sea and Highbridge libraries, which could benefit from
the new council strategy