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Libraries: statutory requirement checklist

The Save Doncaster Libraries campaign has obtained the checklist below through a Freedom of Information request to the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council. It comes from a presentation made by the MLA to the Donacaster council but their advice to other councils is likely to be very similar.

The statutory requirement of the Public Libraries Act to deliver a ‘comprehensive and efficient’ library service. This requires understanding of:

  • The council’s local priorities and financial constraints
  • The profile and needs of different local communities
  • Delivery models and best practice from elsewhere
  • Comparative impact of alternative approaches to delivering the service

What resources are available and how does this match the needs?

  • Have you analysed and considered need and demand?
    specific needs of adults and young people?; all ages? (and what contribution are communities able and willing to make?)
  • What are the needs of those living and working and studying in the area?
  • How accessible will the service be- transport / physical access?
  • Have the communities been consulted? How?
  • What are the views of users / what do we know re views of non users?
  • Have you done an Equality Impact Assessment?
  • What implications are there for other strategies – info from other partners?
  • Are there other partnerships that can be tapped into?
  • Will the service be adequate – how can it be better used?

How efficient is the current service?

  • Are the buildings fit for purpose in terms of access, condition etc?
  • Can the facilities be used more flexibly?
  • What other delivery partnerships could be formed inside and outside Doncaster? (Y&H/other similar authorities)
  • Who else is serving the needs of the target communities?
  • Is the current mode of delivery both meeting the demand and cost efficient?
  • Is a physical presence needed?
  • What is being done to encourage use (and maximise income?)
  • What scope is there for combining services?

You can see the full FoI request and response at Save Doncaster Libraries.



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