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Thousands have their say on new libraries strategy

10 January 2019

The consultation on the future of Essex library services has reached its half-way point, and with six weeks to go there is still plenty of time to have your say.

As of 9 January, over 13,000 surveys have been completed – including online, paper copy and via the Essex contact centre.

There have also been responses from organisations and from people and organisations who are interested in running community libraries, where that could be a potential future option. Responses have been received from individuals, families, children and young people.

During the consultation, information drop-ins are being held at each of the 74 libraries the council runs around the county. Based on public feedback, the Council has changed its approach to these. Instead of one two or four hour slot, the Council is offering a week at each library when the public can drop in at any time the library is open to ask questions and find out about plans for libraries in the future. The change means people can access the drop-ins at a more convenient time and those who may need help to access the information have the time and space to do so.

If you need help to access the consultation and survey, library staff can provide it.

A list of the remaining drop-ins can be found here.

The drop-in sessions are to provide information not take feedback – completing the survey is the best way to ensure individual views are recorded and heard.

Essex County Councillor Sue Barker, Cabinet Member for Customer and Corporate said: “We are half way through the library consultation and I'm really pleased with the high number of responses, and the amount of engagement, we've had from Essex residents and community groups. Thank you everyone for taking the time to share your views. The consultation is open till 20 February so I would encourage anyone who hasn't yet completed the survey to please do so."

The survey can be found here. Residents are encouraged to complete the survey online, however, if this is not possible the survey can be completed over the phone on 0345 603 7639 or a paper copy, large print or EasyRead version can be sent to you.