Stirchley Library is under threat of closure and local campaigners are asking residents in Bournville and Stirchley to back them in their plea to save this vital local service.
Jessie Cape from the Save Stirchley Library group makes her case below:
Library under threat
As the chance to have your say on the consultation for Birmingham’s Community Libraries comes to a close I wonder what the future holds for our local Stirchley Library. My two daughters and I are frequent visitors to the library and it is a very important service to us.
In response to the threat posed by the cuts, a group of us local residents have formed a campaign group to help try to save the library. Proposals in the consultation documents suggest that the library services may be moved into Stirchley Baths (along with reduced opening hours).
We are concerned about this as no details have been given on how this might work and fear that a drastic loss of services (including the much loved dedicated children’s library) may occur. Possibly even leading to a situation where there is no book stock at all, just a facility to collect books that have been ordered in.
We realise that the current building needs some urgent repairs, especially to its boiler. Whilst we appreciate the council is in a difficult position, we believe that the library building is not being used to its full potential, and, with some work we believe the currently unused space in the library has potential to create an income to help support the library.
A small group of us are writing up some different scenarios and possibilities to present to the council. For more information please see the Save Stirchley Library Facebook group (facebook.com/groups/SaveStirchleyLibrary) and thread on the Stirchley website forum (stirchley.co.uk/onlineforum/).
We would love to hear from people who have any ideas or are interested in volunteering time to help secure the future of the library and the library building, and also anyone who maybe interested in joining the soon to be established Friends of Stirchley Library group.
We are very passionate about our purpose built Carnegie library on Cadbury gifted land and concerned that moving the library out would be detrimental to library users and put the building at risk of either standing empty (as the Baths did for so many years) or being sold off to developers.
Our hope is for a revitalised library that compliments Stirchley Baths and brings even more opportunities to the area. We believe libraries are a safe space for people to learn, socialise and be inspired and we do not want to lose this very well used and loved community facility.
I’m glad to see that real Bournville news is being reported rather than the recent foolishness printed about dodging.
This is something our community can positively engage with.
Surely BCC and Cadburys can put their hands in their pockets for this? After all, BCC (and Tesco….!) have just refurbished the baths…sacrilege to let this vital service to the community disappear and to close such a fabulous building.