Council’s libraries strategy adopted

Audrey Bemrose pictured with Mills and Boon author Kate Walker
Audrey Bemrose pictured with Mills and Boon author Kate Walker

DESPITE the current financial climate, East Riding of Yorkshire Council says it remains committed to providing excellent libraries and has adopted a new library strategy, which sets out a plan for the library service for the next five years.

The council says it has avoided having to close libraries and reduce staffing numbers and opening hours in order to meet budget reductions due to “prudent financial management and finding innovative and value for money ways of working”.

The aim of the strategy is to continue to keep the best of what the library service currently offers, while trying to identify changes needed to ensure they continue to meet expectations, according to the council.

Bridlington Central and Old Town Councillor Richard Burton, cabinet portfolio holder for civic wellbeing and culture, said: “The council has and continues to explore innovative ways of working that benefit our residents by providing both a first-class service and value for money.

“In the years to come, a successful library service will be one that is flexible, resilient and responsive. We will work hard to ensure that our libraries continue to be much loved and used by our residents, both now and in the future.

“The council has done an effective job of lowering costs while improving services and will continue to take this approach in the years ahead.”

Over the past few years, the council refurbished a number of libraries across the East Riding with both of Bridlington’s main libraries benefitting from refurbishment - with Bridlington North having a self-service facility installed and a layout change to improve the venue.

Bridlington Central Library also underwent a major refurbishment in 2010 to provide a high-quality library and learning centre for the town and is home to a number of events, including a successful writers’ group.

Audrey Bemrose, a member of the library’s writers’ group, said: “I first joined Bridlington Library nearly 60 years ago as a schoolgirl, seeking information for school projects.

“The wealth of Bridlington records in the local studies and free online access to ancestry has held my attention for many happy hours of research into family and local history.

“There are lecture room, talks on many different topics and there is now even a monthly writers’ group. If I’m not at home, look for me at the library. It’s a good place to be.”