Appeal for volunteers to run almost half of Derbyshire libraries

County council leader councillor Barry Lewis
County council leader councillor Barry Lewis

Derbyshire County Council is transferring the running of almost half its libraries over to volunteers.

The authority is looking for volunteers and groups to run 20 of its 45 libraries.

County council leader councillor Barry Lewis, is appealing to community groups and organisations to find out more and book a place at their local library open day.

Open days are being held at each of the 20 libraries to be transferred to community management, and there will be information about running a Derbyshire community library, the application process, the benefits and what support is available.

Coun Lewis said: “We value our library service and we know that our communities do too.

“This is a real opportunity for groups to come together and work with us to secure the future of the service by taking over their own library and helping it to grow, thrive and become a tailor-made community hub.

“It will have the potential to reinvigorate communities and put libraries back into the heart of their town or village.”

The open days will be held on days the libraries are closed to the public so that interested groups can have a tour of the building and talk through the process involved in detail.

Coun Lewis added: “Councillor Barry Lewis added: “Libraries are being transferred to communities up and down the country and we’re confident community libraries in Derbyshire will thrive with local people at the helm.

“They’ll be able to offer a wider range of services and opportunities for their residents, tailor-made to suit their needs, possibly extend opening hours and apply for grants that are not open to the council.

“We’ll be with them every step of the way to ensure they succeed.”

Open events for the proposed community management of the mobile library service are also being held, one at Buxton Library and the other at Long Eaton Library.

Groups who successfully take over their community library will receive help from the authority, with five years of grant funding, and assisting with training.

To apply, or find out more, visit: www.derbyshire.gov.uk/libraries-for-derbyshire
Libraries that are being transferred to community management are:

Borrowash

Brimington

Clowne

Creswell

Duffield

Etwall

Gamesley

Hadfield

Hayfield

Holmewood

Killamarsh

Melbourne

Old Whittington

Pinxton

Somercotes

Tideswell

Whaley Bridge

Whitwell

Wingerworth

Woodville