Culture 2020

Carnegie Library under threat as library closures proposed

Major cuts in library services were announced by Lambeth Labour council in proposals made public on the 30th January: closure and sale of the Minet and Waterloo libraries, and ending funding and staff for the Carnegie, Durning and Upper Norwood libraries. Only Clapham, Brixton, Streatham and West Norwood are to be retained as publicly-funded. Despite increasing usage and the 4th-highest number of book issues in Lambeth, the Carnegie would no longer be included in the statutory library provision duty of the council. Instead of public funding, the Carnegie would need to compete with others for funds from an endowment set up with the proceeds of the Minet and Waterloo sales.

These proposals contradict the principles of the Cooperative Library concept (Cooperative Library Services, Lambeth Council, 2012) which emphasised the importance of a professionally-led and comprehensive library service.

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