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Use or lose mobile libraries
10:00am Monday 23rd July 2012 in News
FORTY mobile library stops across Hampshire could be axed after it was revealed an average of just 28 people have been using them.
The stops are all four-weekly, which is one explanation put forward for why more people aren’t using them, and residents are being asked what they think can be done to increase their use.
Two of the under-used stops are in Rockbourne and Whitsbury .
A public consultation is now underway to gauge opinion among residents, mobile library drivers, customers, and local district and parish councils to see if by making changes, the stops have potential for increased custom.
This feedback, along with comments from other interested parties, will be used to inform a decision due in the autumn to revise the Mobile Library Service.
Hampshire County Council executive member for culture and recreation Keith Chapman said: “Our new, improved, and streamlined mobile library service was launched last summer following two extensive public consultations aimed at saving more than £500,000 a year, and modernising the service, as it had not been reviewed in over 20 years.
“We said that we would review the service one year on, so we have been assessing the results of this transformation.
“The new Mobile Library Service currently makes 363 stops around Hampshire, mainly on a monthly and weekly basis, but a number of these stops are so poorly used that this is not an efficient use of the vehicles.”
If there is no potential for improvement, the 40 stops could be withdrawn from October 21.
Drivers will be talking to customers at the 40 affected stops during July and August.
People can also complete a form at hants.gov.uk/library .
The closing date for the consultation is August 24.