Discussions will take place which will help to develop a new strategy for the future shape of the county’s library service.

The service needs to be transformed in order to make savings and additional income totalling more than £1.8 million over three years whilst ensuring the service delivers on key Council priorities such as health, skills for all age groups and developing the local economy.  Next year Cambridgeshire County Council has to save £30.4 million after having saved around £70 million over the last two years and £31 million this financial year.

Alongside the financial savings that need to be made within the Library Service, ways of transforming it to help meet future trends will also be considered.

If agreed, the review would look at further efficiency savings, and would consider areas such as working more closely with communities to help deliver library services that respond to local needs and the role of community hubs in providing access to a wider range of services.  The review would also look at the potential for raising income through additional services and reducing costs by maximising the benefits of digital access. There will be a public consultation on the draft strategy for the future approach to the service and ways to meet savings requirements.

Graham Hughes, Cambridgeshire County Council’s Executive Director, Economy, Transport and Environment said “Difficult decisions have to be taken to balance the council’s budget. Libraries play a key role in our communities and these are early discussions to look at how we can maximise the use of library services for a wider range of uses and sustain them within the budget that we have available.”

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