Consultation starts on future of York’s libraries

 A few days after the York Council endorsed a Liberal Democrat motion aimed at securing existing library services in York, the authority has started a 14-week consultation with residents about library services in the city.

The LibDem motion was tabled at a Council meeting amidst fears that the Tory leadership wanted to impose budget cuts which would lead to library closures.  Tories are also apparently looking to change the Library provider in the city from the current (very successful) Trust to a different contractor.

In 2019 the council is due to enter into a new contract for library services and wants to hear from residents about their future needs to help inform the contract.

A media release from the Council says, “York’s libraries are very successful. The council’s provider, Explore York, has introduced many new services, visitor numbers and book issues are good and the service offers excellent value for money. Library users are very satisfied with the current service, particularly valuing libraries as spaces for the community to come together, where everybody is welcome.

Nonetheless, the council recognises that it cannot stand still, and wants to build on Explore’s success to ensure that the service continues to meet changing needs and expectations in the years ahead.

The council recognises that users want to see improvement in the fabric of the library buildings. This reflects the fact that many of the buildings are in poor condition, needing around £3m spending on them in the coming years. The consultation should help target the council’s investment to best effect.

The council’s vision is to have libraries as centres of learning and opportunity for all. This would see state-of-the-art learning spaces stocked with a broad range of materials that promote reading and literacy and support people with the information they need. Flexible spaces would support formal and informal learning including a range of learning programmes, complemented by the latest digital technologies with free, online access.

Acomb Explore Library

The council’s online survey is seeking feedback on the proposed vision and the range of library buildings to meet residents’ needs. In addition, the council wants to understand future needs, gauge volunteer capacity and ask whether or not people want to see other services co-located in libraries”.

Councillor Ann Reid, interim executive member for culture, leisure and tourism, said: “It is important that we really understand what residents would like to see for the future of their library services and whether our vision for the service and the buildings is on the right lines. I would urge everyone to take this chance to let us know their views.

“To understand what residents would like to see for the future of their library services and whether our vision for the service and the buildings is on the right lines, please complete the survey before Wednesday 14 February 2018 at www.york.gov.uk/consultations. Staff at any library or West Offices will be happy to help.”

The motion carried by the Council against Tory opposition said,
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What’s on in York: Tasty Halloween Treats

Acomb Explore Library :

Tue 31 Oct :

1.00pm – 3.00pm :

£6

Oct _31AC HalloweenNo tricks here, only treats!

Pop along and make Halloween Treats, including Ghoulish Biscuits, Witch Cupcakes, Monster Marshmallows & Pumpkin Treats.

Booking is essential.  Please phone on (01904) 552651 or email acomb@exploreyork.org.uk to reserve a place.

What’s on in York – Safe & Sound : An Introduction to Online Safety for Parents and Carers

Acomb Explore Library

Mon 23 Oct; Mon 20 Nov & Mon 18 Dec

6.00pm – 7.30pm

Free

Oct _23Safe &SoundJoin us for a free 90 minute introduction to online safety during which you’ll learn about potential online risks, using parental controls and filters, staying safe on social networks such as Twitter and Facebook, helping your children to alert you to possible dangers and other useful resources.

You don’t need to bring anything with you; tablet computers will be provided during the session and refreshments will be available.

Free of charge – Booking is essential.

Please contact (01904) 552651 or email acomb@exploreyork.org.uk to reserve your place.

What’s on in York: Truth, Lies, and Forensic Alibis with AD Garrett

Acomb Explore Library :

Sat 16 Sept :

4.00pm – 6.00pm :

£7.50

Sept _16ADGarrettFind out how the real forensic experts deal with a crime scene – and how crime writers make sure they get the facts right. Examine the evidence at our ‘crime scene’, and chat with the writer and the forensic expert who together form the writing collaboration, A.D. Garrett. Pit your wits against the experts in this fun, friendly event and see if you can find clues that could help to solve a major crime.

A.D. Garrett is the pseudonym for prize-winning novelist Margaret Murphy working in consultation with policing and forensics expert, Helen Pepper.

Margaret Murphy has published nine internationally acclaimed psychological thrillers under her own name – both stand-alone and police series. She is Writing Fellow and Reading Round Lector for the Royal Literary Fund, a past Chair of the Crime Writers Association (CWA), and founder of Murder Squad. A CWA Short Story Dagger winner, her work has been shortlisted for the First Blood critics’ award as well as the CWA Dagger in the Library.

In 2013, writing as A.D. Garrett, Margaret began a new forensic series, featuring Prof. Nick Fennimore and DCI Kate Simms. Everyone Lies was a bestseller, and both Everyone Lies and the sequel, Believe No One, garnered starred reviews from Publishers’ Weekly. Jeffery Deaver commented, ‘A.D. Garrett has done for Manchester what The Wire did for Baltimore. Simms and Fennimore are complex, compelling, and just plain marvellous.’ Truth Will Out, the third in the series, is now available in paperback.

Helen Pepper is a Senior Lecturer in Policing at Teesside University. She has been an analyst, Forensic Scientist, Scene of Crime Officer, CSI, and Crime Scene Manager. As a Crime Scene Investigator, she examined over 3000 crime scenes, ranging from thefts and fires to rapes and murders. Later, as Crime Scene Manager for Durham Police, she supervised CSIs in over 50 major incidents. She is a member of the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences, and has a wealth of experience in the investigation of crime, from simple thefts, to murders and terrorism. An author in her own right, Helen has co-authored, as well as contributed to, professional policing texts. She is a judge for the CWA’s Non-Fiction Dagger award, and is Forensic Consultant to both the Vera and Shetland TV series.

Website: www.adgarrett.com

Twitter @adgarrett1

To book tickets click here.