Sunday, 31 July 2016

Keeping Services Alive in Cramlington!

According to library and book lending campaigners, Library visits have fallen by 48 million to 202million annually as 324 libraries closed under Coalition hands and over 200 have closed under the new Tory Governments Austerity Measures, yet none have closed in Northumberland. Some have been re-housed in order to reduce running costs and some are joining with Tourist Information Centres to gain critical mass and cheapen this openly attacked service.

Attacked not only by Government’s attitude towards cuts but by the long term drive towards e-education, further education and e-learning.
In March this year Northumberland County Councils Leisure and Culture scrutiny panel asked that Active Northumberland, the Councils library service partner organisation undertake a review of libraries and the integration scheme. That review has just been made public and reported on by the News Post Leader.
On 27th July, Northumberland Tories on the L&C panel from the West of the County who are close to the Tory leadership and Tory policy, accepted the £750,000 saving integration has delivered for the service and that library provision is being saved for the massively reduced numbers who regularly borrow books.
Yet today we have Cramlington Tories led by Councillor Daley, spinning out a story complete with a miserable looking photo, ruthlessly attacking the integration policy against both their own group’s acceptance and their own Governments application of Austerity measures nationally.
I hope when this report reaches Cabinet in September the Tories have their act together as this continued smoke and mirrors, ‘Say NO to everything’ campaign is boring most of Northumberlands public!

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