Public Libraries

Department for Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered am ar 21 Mai 2024.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Photo of Jim Shannon Jim Shannon Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Human Rights), Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Health)

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment she has made of the sustainability of library services.

Photo of Julia Lopez Julia Lopez Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office), The Minister of State, Department for Culture, Media and Sport, Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)

The Public Libraries and Museums Act 1964 requires all upper-tier local authorities to provide a comprehensive and efficient library service. It is for local authorities to identify the needs of local residents and to fund and provide a library service that meets those needs.

His Majesty’s Government has provided an additional £600 million on top of the £64 billion Local Government Finance Settlement for 2024-25 — an increase of 7.5% in cash terms. This uplift will help to reduce pressure on councils’ budgets, and protect services including public libraries.

We will be publishing a refreshed Government strategy for public libraries later this year, informed by the independent review of English public libraries conducted by Baroness Sanderson of Welton, which was published in January here. The forthcoming strategy will set out our plans to ensure that people across the country can benefit from excellent library services, and HM Government will explore opportunities to increase library use and engagement in line with the recommendations made in Baroness Sanderson’s independent review.

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