Big Hours Cut Proposed at Dickens Heath Library
Big Hours Cut Proposed at Dickens Heath LibrarySolihull Council have proposed the cutting of Dickens Heath Library opening hours by 26%, to just 14 hours per week, from 1st April 2020, bringing back the September 2019 plans that the Parish Council successfully opposed and were deferred at that time. The Parish Council was especially disappointed as only last April their Offices were sold, the mortgage paid off, and they co-located into the 1st Floor of the Library as a cost saving partnership for us both. This move had been long in arranging and was aimed at safeguarding the Community Library with the Parish Council now paying 45% of the building’s expensive running costs. The proposal to then reduce Library opening hours came as a huge disappointment and strong representations were made, supported by Cllr. Ken Hawkins, leading to the plans in the Library Review being further deferred by Cllr. Rolf, on 27th January, until June for further local consultation.
We now need Community Action to support our Dickens Heath Library Campaign – here’s how: At the next Parish Council Meeting there are two Senior Solihull Council Officers – Kate Bunting (Libraries) and Alyson McGrory (Asst. Director) – attending to explain the proposals and hear the Parish Council/Community Views. To “REVERSE THE PROPOSED CUT IN OPENING HOURS” – Public attendance at 7.15pm on Tuesday 11th February at the Library would greatly help. To Sign the Petition to support the Parish Council at our stand at the Food & Craft Market at the Village Hall 10.00am to 12.00noon on Saturday 8th February (note this is a new time for the Craft & Food Market this month only). A copy of the petition to Solihull Council is attached in case any concerned residents would like to collect signatures from family or friends etc. and return to Dickens Heath Parish Council c/o Dickens Heath Library by 22nd February. Email personal representations direct to Cllr Alison Rolf, the Cabinet Post Holder, at Solihull Council at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Proposed New Opening Hours are – Monday 2.00pm to 5.00pm (cut 1 hour) Tuesdays Closed (cut 3 hours) Wednesdays Closed (as now) Thursdays 10.00am to 1.00pm & 2.00pm to 6.00pm (1 hour increase) Saturday 10.00am to 2.00pm (cut 2 hours)
We say it makes little sense to have a costly Library building as a public asset open for just 14 hours a week, particularly given that the Parish Council is now sharing the use and costs.