Library cuts under scrutiny

editorial image

AROUND 2,000 people have had their say over plans to reduce Calderdale library services.

During a consultation period, people across Calderdale had the chance to come up with suggestions for saving money in libraries. The full results will be published later this month.

Councillors intend to save £150,000 a year and are considering reducing opening hours at many of the district libraries.

The library review included the Halifax Central Library, plus 22 static libraries, including those in Brighouse, Rastrick, Hipperholme and Bailiff Bridge, plus the two mobile ones.

Calderdale Council’s Communities Committee has considered putting post offices into libraries enabling them to sell stationary and running coffee shops to help make them more viable.

Forty volunteers already support Calderdale library staff and numbers could be extended.

Reducing opening operations from 45 to 37 hours a week at main libraries across Calderdale, including Brighouse, could save £20,000.

During the last five years, the council has improved libraries, built new ones and refurbished several others.

Investment this year has included new self-service technologies and there have been reductions in expenditure.

The communities panel has recommended that no libraries should close as a result of the review.

Decisions about future provision will be made at the council’s cabinet meeting on December 12.