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Libraries to merge with police stations?

8th August 2011

Hundreds of libraries across the UK could be merged with local health centres and police stations if new proposals by the Local Government Association and the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council come into force.

The authorities claim that merging public buildings in this way would help to keep some 400 libraries open, as they would be run in partnership with the private sector and readers would have a say in how they are operated.

These proposals were detailed in the report Future Libraries: Change, Options and How to Get There, which examined how to deliver modern library services with 'innovative approaches' that will help to save money.

Councillor Chris White, chairman of the Local Government Association's Culture, Tourism and Sport Board, said that pilot schemes involving 36 local authorities have highlighted how it is possible to 'break down the barriers of tradition' and ensure libraries stay open.

'The best libraries are at the heart of councils' approaches to everything from lifelong learning to wellbeing, job seeking, volunteering, education and encouraging more people to get online,' he added.

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