Tory Councils cut Libraries more - Twigg

30 April 2012

Stephen Twigg8 out of top 10 councils for library cuts are Conservative run. Conservative Councils cut twice as much as Labour councils

Labour is today publishing figures which demonstrate the cost of a local council being run by the Conservatives or Liberal Democrats, with library services being cut at twice the rate in Tory authorities than Labour ones. The average cut in a Labour council is around £400,000 but for Tory Councils it is double that - well over £800,000.

Stephen Twigg will visit Upper Norwood Library on Monday 30 April to discuss the impact of Government cuts with staff and library users. The library has recently been threatened with closure following the withdrawal of funding by Conservative-run Croydon Council. Labour-run Lambeth Council, who also part finance the library, are trying to protect the library from closure.

Stephen Twigg MP, Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary said:

“Libraries are an incredibly important part of our cultural fabric. As well as giving young people the gift of reading, they also give adults the opportunity to access advice, look for employment and get on the internet.

“With one in three children without a book at home, it is worrying that the Government is overseeing a postcode lottery in library services.

“Two libraries a week are being closed or being threatened with closure.

“The ultimate responsibility for this lies with the Tory-led Government. But these figures show Labour councils are far more likely to protect what libraries they can.

Dan Jarvis MP, Labour’s Shadow Minister for Libraries added:

“Every local council faces difficult choices because of the scale of Government cuts - but in many places libraries have been facing more than their fair share of cuts.

“Taken as a whole, the message from these figures is that Labour simply values libraries more."