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Forest Hill Library - Proposed Cut to Funding
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robbrockley


Posts: 91
Joined: Jun 2013
Post: #81
02-11-2015 02:44 PM

See my post re swimming cuts. What are you proposing the Council cuts instead? No point objecting with out some constructive ideas.

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lacb


Posts: 623
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #82
02-11-2015 03:58 PM

The council seems to have successfully sold the notion that the only way to pay for some services is by cutting others. Am sure this is tricky budgeting but I don't completely buy this political notion. Apart from the obvious raising of rates (which they can do with an elected mayor), I feel certain that there are many admin cost savings and revenue raising projects that they could explore too, especially if they club together with other councils (for instance, why have completely separate library services?).

Having said that, I think that robbrockley has a valid point. The question is not do you want to preserve a council library service (practically everyone will say yes to that), rather are you prepared to pay for it? Perhaps more pertinently, how?

For the record, am happy to continue supporting libraries through rates (for their social function). This is because we hardly ever use them due to collective family inability to return books before the due date. It works out cheaper to buy them second hand!

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P1971


Posts: 816
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #83
02-11-2015 04:08 PM

Hi robbrockley

I've read your post and definitely wouldn't want to see cuts in any of the areas you listed.
As mentioned previously in this thread Lewisham Council seem to be wasting money on pavements being re paved and Roads being tarmaced which wasn't needed as well as scaffolding being left up to replace windows which someone told me wasn't needed either. I'm not sure of the costs on this but sure it is quite a lot.

I've been emailing all our local councillors & a few others (including someone from the South London Press) back and forth about the library cuts and have made them aware that a lot of people would be happy to pay an extra pound or 2 per month for their council tax to keep the library run by Lewisham council as a public service for the community as a whole.

I know council tax is capped by central government but I have asked them to take central government to task over this and I've also asked them why are they not fighting against central government about all these cuts they are being told to make.

I know I'm asking a lot and probably the impossible but surly someone has to try.

I strongly feel if this library proposal goes ahead it will have a massive knock on effect on FH so I'll do everything I possibly can to stop it.

Sorry for the essay guys, I'm getting off my soapbox now!

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P1971


Posts: 816
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #84
02-11-2015 06:04 PM

Thanks lacb for your post.

I should make all aware my posts are from me personally and not FHTA as a whole.

If anyone has anything they think we should discuss about our FHTA letter please let me know asap so we can have a look as a whole group.

My email is sugarmountain.info@gmail.com please title all "library" incase it goes to my junk folder

Thank you

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P1971


Posts: 816
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #85
02-11-2015 10:08 PM
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Jane2


Posts: 221
Joined: Jan 2007
Post: #86
03-11-2015 11:15 AM

Not sure how to put an image in a post but I thought you might appreciate this cartoon in support of libraries:

http://blogs.post-gazette.com/index.php/...brary-card

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michael


Posts: 3,220
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #87
03-11-2015 01:52 PM

From the link above:

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Jane2


Posts: 221
Joined: Jan 2007
Post: #88
03-11-2015 04:26 PM

Thanks Michael!

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P1971


Posts: 816
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #89
03-11-2015 05:04 PM

Thanks Jane x

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P1971


Posts: 816
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #90
04-11-2015 01:01 PM

Councillors in Greenwich seen to have a very different view to our local councillors when it comes to libraries.

"The council has built a strong record in investing in its libraries"

See article below

http://www.southlondon-today.co.uk/artic...?id=114284

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michael


Posts: 3,220
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #91
04-11-2015 02:49 PM

Wow. Great to hear about investment in a new library, and one that is going to attract 100,000 visitors a year - that's massive.

Actually 156,000 visitors a year was the number for Forest Hill in 2014/2015 (well behind some of the other non-community libraries in Lewisham) but book borrowing was 3rd highest with 108,000 books issued from Forest Hill library over the year.

I wonder if Greenwich council would be interested in running more libraries outside the borough?

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P1971


Posts: 816
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #92
04-11-2015 10:50 PM

Last few sentences from me in my last reply email tonight to our local councillors!!!

"Like I've said before I'm not a politician but I am your average resident and I'm asking you all as our councillors to get behind me and fight to keep our library safe and run by Lewisham Council.

As you mentioned Greenwich Council why don't you all take a leaf out of their book where "The council has built a strong record of investing in its libraries"

They are expecting a new library to attract 100,000 visitors per year AND as far as I know Forest Hill had 156,000 visitors 2014/2015.

See article here!

http://www.southlondon-today.co.uk/artic...?id=114284

And last but not least why are none of you as our local councillors commenting on the "Forest Hill Library" thread on our local forum SE23.com?

Here's the link to the thread!

http://www.se23.com/forum/showthread.php...0#pid71730"

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Mr_Numbers


Posts: 511
Joined: May 2012
Post: #93
05-11-2015 06:32 AM

For reasons I won't bore you with I use the library in Eltham (which is part of LB Greenwich) quite a lot these days. It's big and very well stocked, in my view. The popular science and maths sections are really very good, I think.

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P1971


Posts: 816
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #94
05-11-2015 07:39 PM

Here's my latest response today to ongoing emails I have mentioned previously with our local councillors plus.

I'm only copy and pasting my replies but am happy to show all correspondence as I believe I am allowed to do this if anyone comes and asks.

copy and paste from email I sent today


"2 - Why don't you make a bold decision again and fight for our library?
I've been begging you as our local councillors to do this for our community as I can foresee a massive knock on effect and it will be a massive loss to FH residents young and old.

3 - Then even more reason for Downham over Forest Hill to be ran as a community library because it seems to me to have more chance of surviving if it has all that extra footfall due to the other services it has. As I've said before I don't want any library to change but I'm fighting for Forest Hill because it's where I live and work and what my customers are asking of me. Again as I've said before I really feel that this is discrimination because we care about where we live and it's not right and not fair.

4 - Have you actually asked owners of local independent coffee shops and cafes if this has effected their trade?
I strongly feel that if a cafe were added at FH library it will have a massive knock on effect and take business away from our local independent coffee shops and cafes on Dartmouth Road.
As a local independent shop owner I can assure you this will have an effect. Then what happens if one or more have to close down?
Most but not all traders that get very involved in our community are on Dartmouth Road and I know this would effect some of them.
Then the footfall gets less
Then more independent shops close
And so on and so on
Get the picture!

5 - I agree that free wifi and Internet services are very popular at FH library BUT I strongly believe that the most popular part of our library in FH is borrowing which I feel will be highly effected if it were to become a community library."

Copy and paste ends from email I sent today.

I just think locals should now about this.

I will add that one local councillor is responding to my emails as you can see from my reply email and has said they will look at thread.

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P1971


Posts: 816
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #95
06-11-2015 09:45 AM

The petition to save our library now has over 1100 signatures.

If you agree with it please sign it and please share with others.

https://www.change.org/p/lewisham-counci...-libraries

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P1971


Posts: 816
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #96
13-11-2015 11:06 AM

If you want to sign the petition to save our library in Forest Hill please do so by midnight on Sunday 15th.

https://www.change.org/p/lewisham-counci...-libraries

Another article in South London Press today with local author Chrissie Gittins.

http://www.southlondon-today.co.uk/artic...?id=114476

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P1971


Posts: 816
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #97
13-11-2015 08:25 PM

ITV News are coming to interview me and others that feel strongly about our library this Sunday around midday (exact time will be confirmed tomorrow) please come along if you feel strongly about this too.

The more people behind this the more chance we have of saving our library. If anyone wants more details pm me, post here or email me. My email is in an earlier post and kids accompanied by parents are welcome to come too.

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P1971


Posts: 816
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #98
14-11-2015 08:26 PM

Hi All

This is now questionable at the moment due to what happened in Paris last night which is completely understandable.

Was very humbled by the apologies from ITV News and it may still go ahead but I won't be able to confirm this until tomorrow morning.

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P1971


Posts: 816
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #99
15-11-2015 02:44 PM

I assumed this was not going ahead but with 10 minutes notice today ITV News turned up.

I wasn't prepared as I thought it was called off so hopefully myself and my customers managed to get the message across as best as we could. Some was filmed at mine and some outside the library where the amazing Chrissie Gittins (local author and Lewisham's writer in residence) was also interviewed.

This should be on the news tonight, dependent on updates about Paris.

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Ligersaur


Posts: 60
Joined: Sep 2014
Post: #100
16-11-2015 12:32 PM

The following article on the Guardian website was posted last week, but I missed it at the time and haven't it referenced on this forum:

Corbyn activists call for 'no cuts' council budget

Quote:
A group of Jeremy Corbyn supporters is to call on a local authority to decline to set a budget complying with the Treasury’s spending cuts.

In a move that could be copied in other constituencies, the Lewisham for Corbyn – Momentum group, a part of the mass movement that grew out of Corbyn’s leadership campaign, agreed to protest against its Labour council’s proposals to close libraries and community centres.

Quote:
James Schneider, a spokesman for Momentum nationally, said: “What Lewisham Momentum are trying to do is collect signatures on an official “no cuts budget” petition. If they get 8,000, it will be debated in the council. This has been decided by Momentum supporters in Lewisham meeting locally. It is not a national decision but if it is seen as a positive and successful course of action then it could be replicated elsewhere.”


I am not sure of the current number of signatories, but it would be interesting to see how close they are to their 8k target, and also to see the ensuing press exposure if they reach the target and force a council debate (regardless of the debate outcome).

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