A consultation to reduce the opening hours of Leeds City Council-run libraries and community hubs has been launched today.
The council is facing a £118 million budget deficit and is looking to cut the opening hours of its hubs in a bid to save money.
Community hubs contain a wide range of council services, including libraries. In West Leeds hubs can be found in Armley, Bramley, Calverley, Farsley and Pudsey.
The council says its Customer Services Department, which manages libraries, needs to save £1.5 million and says its opening days and hours are varied across Leeds. By standardising them, it hopes:
“Citizens will be confident in knowing when Community Hubs and Libraries are open, in any location.
“We will be able to make savings in staffing costs, by letting those staff leave voluntarily, who want to. By changing our opening hours this enables us to keep our libraries open across the city. If we don’t change our opening hours, the alternative may be that we are no longer able to run all of our community hubs and libraries.”
The library and community hub opening hours consultation can be found here.
Bedding and floral consultation
The council is also aiming to cut its spending on seasonal floral bedding displays throughout the city by half, along with a 50% reduction in floral decorations in the city centre, subject to public consultation.
The council says:
“A general reduction in bedding would be achieved through a variety of methods such as removal of beds, reduction in size of existing beds, perennial planting and conversion to wildflower or grass.”
Have your say on these proposals here.
The council says the cuts are necessary due to the unexpected costs of Covid, but also due to the on-going funding reduction from central government.
Check out our interactive map featuring some of the proposed cuts below: