Harlow Labour anger over proposals to close libraries

News / Thu 15th Nov 2018 pm30 09:44pm

HARLOW Labour’s parliamentary candidate, Laura McAlpine has expressed her outrage at Conservative controlled Essex County Council’s announcement of the potential closure of Mark Hall and Tye Green libraries.

Laura McAlpine said: “Essex County Council are trying to save money, but at what cost? Our Libraries are an important hub in our community, a vital resource of learning and re-training for residents and crucial to the day to day lives of those seeking work and on Universal Credit.

“Closing the libraries at Mark Hall and Tye Green will have a devastating impact upon our community and will be felt deepest by young people and the most vulnerable in the community.

“We cannot afford to lose these crucial assets to our communities, which is why Harlow Labour will be campaigning hard across Harlow and petitioning Essex County Council to save our libraries from closure

Harlow Council Leader: Mark Ingall added “I am very disappointed with Essex County Councils decision to begin a public consultation on closing the libraries at Mark Hall and Tye Green.

“This proposed action goes against all the hard work we have been doing and continue to do at Harlow Council in reinvigorating and regenerating our community and will negatively impact on all our residents

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7 Comments for Harlow Labour anger over proposals to close libraries:

2018-11-16 11:02:46

I wonder whether these two Labour politicians would have expressed the same outrage had they been around some 16 years ago when their Party decided to close the Neighbourhood Offices which had existed in the town for some 50 years. These offices provided something of a community hub where residents could see Council officers and elected members and could participate by commenting on and forming Council policy. The reasons given at the time were also to save money, the difference is that the Council did not consult residents. About 400 people a DAY were visiting the offices at The Stow and Bush Fair, this increased footfall to the shopping area, boosting local trade. Part of he Harlow Alliance Party's campaigning is to see a more open and transparent Council and the return of some of it's services to each neighbourhood. The Council could start this by sharing some of the space and costs of running a library, using the space to provide a local focal point for the Council. To date, we see no evidence that Harlow Council are reinvigorating and regenerating our community, indeed if the Prentice Place saga is anything to go by, we will have a very long time to wait to see any changes.

2018-11-16 14:00:55

I do feel tenpin response is yet another example of Harlow Alliance party wanted to drag everyone back 20 years. There is a very simple and straight forward question do you believe in local libraries and do you believe that local residences should have local access. We all accept libraries are no longer about books on shelves but a real time access to information research culture and dare we say pleasure as well. Why won’t you want to retain them. Not sure when ten pin has last been inside a local library but I can assure you they are full of local information to support and assist local people to access all types of services and groups. Regardless of politics we should all get behind this campaign and support our local services. On a separate issue about Prentice place could I suggest you actually visit the site first rather than sitting in Alliance HQ. Sometimes visiting is more productive and provides some credibility to the debate. Many thanks

2018-11-16 16:16:22

Due to the two administration parties, that's the Tory County council administration party and the Labour Harlow district council administration party, closing and cutting services here in Harlow, the Harlow residents should not have to put up with any more council tax increases from either of the two administration parties, next year. We all pay council tax for a reason, to receive a service from the District council and the Country council and we clearly not receiving the services we pay for. At the present time, the Residents will get a better service from a ash tray on a motorbike compared to what they are receiving from the two administration parties. Love Harlow vote ukip. From Dan Long.

2018-11-17 13:50:55

If these libraries are underused, due to local dis-interest, why keep them open ? Typical of the Socialists, wanting to spend our money on hopeless causes. Remember Bliar and P F I. Boom and Bust, the mantra of the REDS.

2018-11-17 16:03:02

Well Durcant, HAP do not wish to take DRAG anyone back 20 years but we certainly want to take the Council back to the days when it carried out meaningful consultations with ALL residents, hundreds of whom every 6 weeks or so attended neighbourhood meetings, They could see Councillors and meet with Council staff who were responsible for providing services. What we have now are long queues when trying to phone the Civic Office, getting a ticket when trying to see someone there (assuming that you can get there) and most residents only get to see a councillor when they are out picking up litter near election time. I visit a library every week and know only to well how valuable they are in many ways. I have put forward a practical solution as to how the Council can help keep the library open, unlike Labour who just complain about the Cons cutbacks. Can you come up with a practical solution? As for Prentice Place, I go there about once a fortnight ...... it has been empty for more than a decade, it could for instance have been used on a temporary tenancy basis for the homeless instead of standing empty. Go back 20 years when Labour's Cllr's Mavis Carter, Jean McAlpine and Bill Gibson were around and this situation would never have occurred.

2018-11-17 17:13:27

Dan Long UKIP makes any interesting point about the impact that closures have had on Harlow. Some examples include the Tory decision to turn the street lights off and the Labour controlled councils decision to fund to keep them on and everyone safe. Tory decision to reduce policing and the Labour controlled council funding extra community officers again to keep us safe. There is real and open choice about who is really listening and responding to Our community needs and it’s not the Tory party. With the campaign about protecting local libraries perhaps we should ask what is the purpose and function of the Tory county council. Could we perhaps dare to suggest that local services could be better managed by people who reall care about Harlow. Could we even widen the scope of responsibility to not only include libraries but roads and pathway maintenance Today we need to fight to stop these vital services closing and then ask who is best placed to support tomorrow’s services. Whilst am biased, evidence would indicate only under Labour do we have the will ,ambition and ability to have confidence in getting this right for Harlow. I hope the other politics groups will support the protection of local services and campaign to retain local library services. Many thanks.

2018-11-17 17:42:45

Antiquated comment from Durcan, yet again. Any questions that need answering can easily be found on-line. The library in Old Harlow caters mainly for people using the computers. So, ban computers ? and go back 30 years, Socialism ?

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