There is mounting pressure on local authorities to reduce public expenditure over the next few years forcing radical re-consideration in the delivery of public services. As a public service at the heart of most communities, the issue of cost cutting and possible closures to libraries is an emotive one and as we are seeing played out in the press, causing public outcry.
Local authorities are particularly vulnerable because of the absence of any readily measurable definition of the statutory duty to provide a “comprehensive and efficient library service” (Libraries and Museums Act 1964). This absence of clarity will no doubt lead to legal challenges against local authorities forced to change the delivery model of this service or in some cases look to close down the service.
We have put together a document on guiding you through the review, using our knowledge of working on Ed Vaizey's Future Library initiative as well as some practical tips on how to mitigate risk and deal with a legal challenge. To receive a copy, please click here.