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Agenda item

Consultation on a New Library Strategy 2020-2025

Cabinet Portfolio:                 Cleaner, Greener Communities

Strategic Directorate:           Regeneration and Environment


Consideration was given to a report which had been presented for pre-decision scrutiny by the Strategic Director of Regeneration and Environment prior to its determination by the Cabinet at its meeting on 20 May 2019.


The report set out proposals to undertake consultation on a new library strategy for the period 2020 – 2025 and a future service delivery model for the Libraries and Neighbourhood Hubs Service.  It was noted that this would ensure that the Service continued to meet the needs of Rotherham residents and also that the Council met the statutory service requirement. It was noted that the current strategy was due to end in 2019 and therefore a new strategy would be required for the period to 2025. In introducing the report, the Cabinet Member for Cleaner Greener Communities indicated that the service was doing very well with increased usage for the first time in years and satisfaction with the service had reached 99%.


Members sought assurances in respect of how the consultation would capture the views and opinions of children and young people across the borough. In response, officers explained that specific focus groups were planned, as well as engagement with the Youth Cabinet. It was recognised that there were differing needs across the age groups amongst children and young people and the consultation would be a valuable source of information in respect of refining the future service offer. In response to a supplementary question, it was confirmed that the service would go into schools to reach a broader number of children and young people.


Clarification was sought in respect of how the service ensured that knowledge of good practice and successes were shared. In response, it was confirmed that managers and supervisors met regularly to bring together examples of good practice which would then inform the annual events programme. It was recognised that the service tried to have an offer that met the needs of local communities, but was also generally consistent across the borough.




1.     That Cabinet be advised that the recommendations be supported.


2.     That a sub-group of Overview and Scrutiny Management Board be established to scrutinise the outcomes of Phase 1 of the consultation prior to the start of work on the final service offer.

Supporting documents: