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Hereford Library & Museum


Denise Lloyd
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Herefordshire Council have just posted the following:



 

"In the interest of public and  staff safety Herefordshire Council have made the decision to temporarily close Hereford Library and Museum with effect from today due to the discovery of trace levels of asbestos found in the building as a result of planned building work due to take place at the site. More information can be found here http://bit.ly/1K0VJAR

 

 

Opportune here goes a move to the Hereford Records Office

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  • 2 weeks later...

Copied from JLP on Facebook

 

 

Barbaric Herefordshire 

Sep 20th
Editorial from Public Libraries News.

I understand that as well as (a) keeping only one council library in all of Herefordshire, (b) hiving off a large part of the surviving one to other services and © closing that surviving library for an indefinite period due to asbestos, the good Conservative councillors of that county are also wanting to (d) cease supporting their Record Office (which opened at a cost of over £8m just this year), Museum and Archives over the next three years. One hopes that the DCMS will have a quiet word and point out that cutting to just (part of) one library would either mean that the council itself would be legally challenged or that the DCMS itself would be open to challenge for not intervening, either of which would have to stand a very good chance of winning. However, I note with some ironic amusement that it was the Conservative MP for the very same area who was Chair of the DCMS Select Committee that gave the Secretary of State, John Whittingdale, such a soft ride over libraries in the recent hearing over his responsibilities. Mr Whittingdale probably laughed about it all the way back to his office, before dismembering the BBC distracted him once more.

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Putting aside the asbestos situation, it seems to me that the Council's plans are a contravention of the act. How can one lacklustre central library in a county the size of Herefordshire be a comprehensive and efficient service? Still, not for the first time HDC don't give a monkey's about what the law says.

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Pete. I agree with your coments above. It was on the cards to transfer all HDC services from Franklin House to the library then sell Franklin House. HDC thinks they are a law unto themselves and have been for some time. I attended the Full Council meeting last week and now I am nolonger a part of it, looking in from a member of the public point of view I am very pleased I am not a part of it any more. All they do is argue among themselves, they do not like any member of the opposition especially IOC and regardless of what the opposition say, the council does what it wants. Still those that make up the council the people elected them in May so they cannot now complain. I did not vote for anyone. Sorry Colin gone off subject.

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You're right,Denise. I've been using 'The Hive' in Worcester since the Hereford Library closure, and what a brilliant library it is. It's a combined university/public resource which is modern,up-to-date and loved by all ages - Hereford Council could learn a lot from Worcestershire County Council...

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The loss of the library and no investment in new facilities for generations in Hereford is appalling. Why are they only now asking the Library Users Group if they can come up with sources of money? My feeling is this is going the same way as the LEA swimming pool - the Council fail to maintain the building on a regular basis and then when the repairs become significant because of neglect they close the building and it never reopens. Many schools are unhappy about using the HALO pool in Hereford but there is little choice if children are to be encouraged to learn to swim (to me a vital skill in a City with a river running through the middle of it).

I am worried the library in Broad St is the same with the council having failed to properly maintain and upgrade it over the years. 

The library is so important for so many people, but particularly young people wanting to study and have access to resources other than the internet. I dont know how this council can talk of improving prospects for young people in Herefordshire if there is not a suitable and OPEN public library. My friends who have children at University cant study in Hereford in the holidays due to the lack of library facilities. How they can talk about a University for Hereford with no proper library services is beyond me.

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So the cost to remove the asbestos is in the region of £86k so how on earth have the ended up with a future of a £Million for repairs to in inc the roof?

 


Report findings published

A consultant’s report into asbestos concentrations in the library building on Broad Street has been reviewed by Public Health England’s Centre for Radiation Chemical and Environmental Hazards. PHE’s advice is that

From this, coupled with infrequent and relatively short visits to library by the public in general, the PHE judge the 

 ....assessment of these potential exposures of the general public to asbestos fibres from visiting these locations would be that the risk is negligible or very low, and any potential exposures would possibly not be very much different to everyday background exposure to asbestos fibres in the general environment which we all experience

The report will now be presented to cabinet on the December 3 – the documentation for this meeting can be found here, including a summary of the asbestos report.

 â€œhealth risk to the public visiting the library to be negligible based on this evidence provided in the report. Of course we have no information of what conditions were like in previous years, so this judgement is made on the assumption that the findings in the report are reflective of typical conditions in the library in the past."

The cost of the removal of the asbestos will be in the region of £86,000, forming part of the overall repair schedule for the building which includes repairs to the roof – the total for all the works will be in the region of £1million

 

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So the cost to remove the asbestos is in the region of £86k so how on earth have the ended up with a future of a £Million for repairs to in inc the roof?

 

 

Because it gives them the excuse they need to keep it closed permanently due to the fact they won't find the £1 million to do it

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It will be interesting to see how the figures stack up, when the work is completed.

 

In October 2015, the HT reported that The Services For Independent Living - SIL - was going to be incorporated into the existing library in Broad Street. The cost given, £145 thousand pounds.

 

Thirty thousand pounds was to come from the council's Economy, Community and Corporate Directorate, and one hundred and fifteen thousand pounds from Adults Wellbeing, contained within the council's approved capitol programme.

 

Removal of the asbestos has now been quoted as £86 thousand pounds..

 

So why does the figure of one million pounds keep being raised?

 

Is this yet another case of "council maths" at work?

 

If some assistance is required with the adding up.... let me help. 86000 plus 145,000 equals 231,000.

 

Quite a significant difference!

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It will be interesting to see how the figures stack up, when the work is completed.

 

In October 2015, the HT reported that The Services For Independent Living - SIL - was going to be incorporated into the existing library in Broad Street. The cost given, £145 thousand pounds.

 

Thirty thousand pounds was to come from the council's Economy, Community and Corporate Directorate, and one hundred and fifteen thousand pounds from Adults Wellbeing, contained within the council's approved capitol programme.

 

Removal of the asbestos has now been quoted as £86 thousand pounds..

 

So why does the figure of one million pounds keep being raised?

 

Is this yet another case of "council maths" at work?

 

If some assistance is required with the adding up.... let me help. 86000 plus 145,000 equals 231,000.

 

Quite a significant difference!

 

I agree, where is the magic £million pound figure coming from? That is a huge amount of money.

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The SIL Hub, which will be set up in the front foyer of the library, and will provide advice and information. The council need to provide this to comply with the 2014 Care Act. Many locations were looked at, but this was the most suitable.

 

But the figures - to me - just aren't adding up at the moment.

 

It's a good idea to share premises, where practicable. If they could squeeze Tourist Information into a corner within this building, I think that would be great! Folks wanting info about our county, generally want to visit the museum and visiting exhibitors..... they'd be in the right place! 

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