Croydon residents are being invited to find out about plans to adapt the library service and give one-to-one feedback at information sessions starting next week.
Earlier this month the council launched an eight-week consultation on three detailed options to continue its borough-wide service while making necessary budget savings.
In response to public feedback from initial consultation early this year, the council had already confirmed it will keep all 13 of its libraries open.
As part of the current consultation phase, which closes on 26 July, the council has arranged drop-in sessions where residents can individually discuss the proposals in person. For anyone not online, residents can take away hard copies of background information and paper feedback forms to complete at home.
There will be around a dozen sessions across the borough, starting on 2 July at Sanderstead library and ending at the central library on 16 July.
The drop-in sessions are:
• Friday 2 July – 11am-12.30pm at Sanderstead library
• Friday 2 July – 2-3.30pm at Purley library
• Saturday 3 July – 10am-4pm at South Norwood market
• Monday 5 July – 9.30-11am at Norbury library
• Monday 5 July – 12.30-2pm at Broad Green library
• Wednesday 7 July – 11am-12.30pm at Thornton Heath library
• Wednesday 7 July – 1.30-3.30pm at South Norwood library
• Friday 9 July – 11am-12.30pm at Coulsdon library
• Friday 9 July – 2.30-4pm at Bradmore Green library
• Monday 12 July – 9.30-11am at Ashburton library
• Monday 12 July – 12.30-2pm at Shirley library
• Tuesday 13 July – 10.30am-12noon at Selsdon library
• Tuesday 13 July – 1.30-3pm at New Addington library
• Friday 16 July – 12noon-2pm at Clocktower Atrium, Central Library
Anyone attending is asked to observe the appropriate Covid-19 measures, including social distancing and face coverings. If you have symptoms of Covid-19 then you should stay at home and get tested. To take part in the consultation online, visit the council website or contact firstname.lastname@example.org
The current consultation phase asks for views on three options for the future service. Option one would mean all libraries would be run by the council’s in-house staff and be open two fewer days per week, except the central library that would open five days a week.
Under option two, the council would work with an organisation to run all 13 libraries, which could include a charity or social enterprise.
Under option three, the council’s in-house staff would run eight libraries and open them two fewer days a week. The other five would be leased to community groups, with the council providing some staff two days a week, as well as books and IT support.
Councillor Patsy Cummings, deputy cabinet member for culture and regeneration, said: “We know how important the borough’s libraries are to Croydon residents, and in response to local consultation feedback earlier this year we have already pledged to keep all 13 of our local branches open.
“We still have a decision to make later this year between three remaining options on how we adapt the future library service, so I hope as many local people as possible share their views in person with our staff at one of these July drop-in sessions.”