Earby’s New Road Community Centre and Barnoldswick’s Library and Children’s’ Centre are due to remain open following a review of Lancashire County Council facilities, but the county council is set to pull out of Earby’s library and Barnoldswick’s Youth Centre on Station Road.
West Craven County Councillor David Whipp said that the draft property strategy, which is to be discussed at Lancashire County Council’s Cabinet meeting on Thursday, was essentially based on the proposals put to the
County by a working group convened by Pendle Council and made up of leading Pendle Councillors from all three parties together with the six County Councillors for Pendle.
Councillor Whipp said: “What the proposals do not do however is to include the suggestions we made for keeping a comprehensive library service. The proposal to keep open Barnoldswick, Colne and Nelson libraries is welcome, and some kind of service is proposed for Brierfield."
“But just closing down the libraries in Trawden, Earby and Barrowford is not acceptable. We put to the County ways of keeping a library in each of these three places including involving volunteers in different ways in each place. We will continue to press the Labour administration at County Hall in Preston to take these ideas seriously.”
Pendle Liberal Democrat Councillor Tony Greaves calls for action
The Liberal Democrat Deputy Leader of Pendle Council, Councillor Tony Greaves, said he was calling for the all-party Pendle working group to be reconvened. “The County Council are going to put these plans out to consultation which will last for 12 weeks, before it makes a decision in September. But this includes the main holiday period and we must start to work now on practical alternatives."
”We understand that LCC have to cut a lot of money out of their budgets for no fault of their own. But our concern is for services for local people in Pendle," says Tony Greaves.
Government cuts leave libraries and other services in Pendle at risk of closing down
County Councillor David Whipp said that due to huge cuts needed because of inadequate Government funding, these proposals are much better than what was on the table last year. "They are a victory for our local communities," he said, "though we need to battle on to keep a library service in Earby."
“With colleagues, I’ve done a lot of work to keep these facilities open," said Liberal Democrat David Whipp, "Earby’s New Road groups and Barndoldswick’s Children’s Centre staff have fought hard for their centres. All this work has paid off with the draft proposals.”
The fight for Earby Library
“Barnoldswick’s library is a gem that I’m very proud to have seen built, and it would have been a catastrophe if it had been closed down," says David Whipp, "Now we need to continue the fight and keep the library service running in Earby. I’m mounting a campaign for a library space in New Road Community Centre, to be run with volunteer support."
If agreed on Thursday, the draft proposals will be open for consultation for a 12 week period, with final decisions being made in September.
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