Proposed library cuts an ‘assault on the community’

hanham library 1 Around 50 Save Hanham Library campaigners held a protest tonight – see library cuts video.

As part of the consultation into cuts to the South Gloucestershire libraries’ budget, people could find out more at a drop-in session at Hanham Library today.

Tonight’s protest outside the library coincided with parish councillors attending to find out more about the savings that South Gloucestershire needs to make as part of a wider savings programme.

South Glos Council is aiming to reduce its library budget by £650,000 a year from next year. The council has said no option is off the table but its preferred option includes cutting opening hours at ‘satellite’ libraries, including Hanham, Downend and Staple Hill, to two days per week, as well as closing Chipping Sodbury Library and axing the mobile library service.

Tonight Save Hanham Library campaigners sang The Library Song, penned to highlight the importance of the library to the community, and were supported by a cacophony of car horns from passing drivers.

no library cuts 040In a  rallying speech, campaigner Suzanne Johnson, pictured above,  told the campaigners: “We want Hanham Library to stay as a part of our community and a full service, fully staffed library.

“These cuts are an assault on our community, they are an assault on old people who rely on the library for social interaction and they are an assault on our children’s literacy. We need access to books, we need access to information, and that is what Hanham Library has always done for us.

“We are not going to see it cut down to a volunteer service, or to two days a week or to privatisation or to whatever else the council is trying to make us accept.”

The consultation runs until 13th May.