Cuts to the mobile library service

Norfolk County Council is consulting on cuts that would halve the budget of the mobile library service. This is an extract from their press release, with a link to the consultation:

Norfolk County Council has launched a consultation about changes to the rural mobile library service, as part of proposals to save £13 million.

The six mobile libraries operated by Norfolk County Council stop outside a variety of places within local communities. There are currently 1,304 stops and time spent at each stop ranges from 10 minutes to an hour. The Council is asking for views, to help shape how the reduced funding should be used for the future delivery of the mobile library service and what should be considered when potentially reducing the number of routes.

Our consultation will explore:

What is important to people currently using or wanting to use the service

How we should prioritise where and for how long a mobile service happens

Whether we could introduce and make better use of digital services

Which partners or other services could work with us to improve the rural and mobile library service

Whether there are local needs and other factors that will help shape delivery

Initial proposals to save £13 million as part of a £60 million target for next year were considered by Cabinet on 4th July, and one of the proposed savings is to reduce the budget for the mobile library service by £200,000 – this is nearly half of the existing budget of £422,000.

The consultation opened on 22nd July and runs until 14th September. You can take part here: . The results of the public consultation will be presented to the County Council’s cabinet in November 2022, and final decisions on the council’s budget will be made in February 2023.