Changes to library opening times
Published: 27 November 2023
New library opening hours will go live across Cheshire East from next month.
The changes will come into effect on Friday 1 December at all sites across the borough except for Alderley Edge library where the new opening hours will go live on Tuesday 5 December.
The mobile library routes and stops will remain as they are now, and a wealth of online resources and services are still available digitally via the council’s website.
The changes to library opening hours are required to deliver the essential savings included in the council’s adopted medium-term financial strategy (MTFS).
Councillor Mick Warren, chair of Cheshire East Council’s environment and communities committee, said: “The council absolutely understands just how much libraries are valued by local communities, and we have worked hard to reduce the impact on library opening hours as much as possible, while ensuring that we can make essential savings to balance our budget and protect services for those most at risk in our community.
“I am very pleased that as a result of the feedback we received about our proposals, and following ‘top-up’ funding from Crewe and Nantwich town councils for services in their areas, 31 hours per week of library opening time has been reinstated across the borough at sites where usage and demand is greatest.
“Alongside this, and as significant pressures on council finances remain, we have continued to explore opportunities to make the libraries service financially more self-sufficient, such as by bringing in third parties for wider community use benefits.”
Cllr Warren added: “I would like to thank Crewe and Nantwich town councils for their support in ‘topping-up’ their local library services.
“The funding they are providing equates to almost 600 hours’ worth of library opening time being maintained each year across these two sites, which is of course positive news for residents and has also helped to limit the impact on our library staff.”
In Crewe, the town council is topping-up services by 7.5 hours each week.
A spokesperson for Crewe Town Council, said: “We recognise the importance and value of local library services and that libraries host a whole range of fantastic resources, facilities, and activities, so we are proud to have been able to ‘top-up’ the opening hours in Crewe and support the library to stay open for longer each week.”
Nantwich Town Council clerk, Samantha Roberts, said: “Nantwich’s library is a fantastic community asset and so it is positive news for the town that the funding provided by the town council will support the facility to remain open for an extra half day each week (four hours), meaning our residents have greater opportunity to access all that is on offer.”
The council is still inviting expressions of interest from town and parish councils to explore ways of working together to deliver library services in their area.
For more information about libraries, visit: cheshireeast.gov.uk/libraries