Residents throughout Bath and North East Somerset are being urged to send in their support for the area’s Mobile Library service as part of a Council consultation launched this week.
The Mobile Library service is under threat of being axed entirely under the Liberal Democrat-run authority’s budget plans for next year. Conservative councillors have opposed the plans and have promised to campaign against them, arguing that it will leave thousands of residents without access to a valued council service.
The Mobile Library currently serves over sixty destinations in the local authority area and many residents in outer-lying areas consider it a life-line as their only regular contact with a council service.
The Council has now launched a consultation on the plans, which can be completed online atwww.bathnes.gov.uk/librarynewsandevents or at a council library, with registered Mobile Library users receiving a copy of the consultation by post. Conservative councillors are urging all mobile library users and as many residents as possible to fill out the questionnaire in support of keeping the mobile library, but have warned residents that they will find no specific question about whether the Mobile Library should be axed or not.
Cllr Martin Veal, Conservative Shadow Cabinet for Neighbourhoods, said:
“This is likely to be local residents’ one and only chance to have their say on the future of the Mobile Library service, so it’s vital that as many local people and library users as possible show their support for this service. It is such an important service to so many people, and is far more than simply a book-loaning facility. It acts as a social hub and a council information point as well. Without it, many communities and disadvantaged residents will be left isolated.
“The more people who complete this consultation and show their backing for the Mobile Library, the more the Lib Dem-run council will have to pay attention to their views. Unfortunately, the consultation has been loaded against the Mobile Library, with no specific question on whether people want to see it kept, so those who fill it out should add an additional comment expressing their support.”