12:44 Thursday 16 January 2014

Public are urged to save mobile library service

Written byRICH GUTTRIDGE

A CAMPAIGN has been launched to save mobile library services in South Derbyshire which could be scrapped as a cost-cutting measure.

A consultation into the future of the county’s mobile library service was launched earlier this week as Derbyshire County Council weighs up how it will make £157 million of savings.

The service visits villages all over the South Derbyshire district, from Willington and Church Broughton to Overseal and Netherseal, and could leaving thousands without a local service.

The authority has put forward three options for the public to consider, which include scrapping the service altogether.

Other avenues being explored by the council are decommissioning the eight smaller vehicles and keeping the two larger ones, cutting seven smaller vehicles and one larger one, or inviting volunteers or community groups to take over the running of the service.

Councillors in Repton and Willington said they would campaign to save what they regard as an important local service.

Repton Parish Council chairman John Shortt said: “I know a lot of elderly and house bound people rely on the mobile library service. It would be hugely disappointing if it did go.”

Council member Barbara McArdle added: “A lot of people use the service, and it goes into schools so they would lose out too.”

Martyn Ford, who represents Repton and Willington on South Derbyshire District Council, said he hoped to see a similar response from the public to a consultation on plans to make changes at fire stations in the district, which has so far gained more than 40,000 responses.

He said: “We have seen what is happening with the fire station plans. I would be thrilled if we could get that sort response here.”

To have your say on the future of mobile library service, visit www.derbyshire.gov.uk/mobilelibraries or call 01629 533365.

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