Save Tarpots Library

A petition signing session on Saturday 12th Jan 2019

Save Tarpots Library petition
Phil Coley

On Saturday 12th January 2019 a group of volunteers mounted a petition signing session to highlight the potential closure of Tarpots Library. These volunteers largely did not know each other and had come together due to a request for help on the Save Our Libraries Essex Facebook page. They worked from 11 am to 1 pm and collected around 170 signatures in that time.

Make Your Voice Heard

Although the petition signing session raised the awareness of the issue, the Essex County Council will only take notice of their own Consultation Document. Therefore anybody who wishes to make their views known, especially about Tarpots Library, is encouraged to fill in the on-line Library Consultation document.

They estimate it will take about 25 minutes to complete. Doing so  shows your commitment to the Library Service regardless of what you actually say and if a large number of people reply it informs the ECC about the strength of opinion in Tarpots. You can download independent guidance on completing the survey and making your voice heard. The examples are for South Benfleet so just substitute Tarpots where necessary.

The ECC will consider all responses to prepare a summary for consideration by the Essex Cabinet in Summer 2019 to agree the next steps. The section you want to get to is Section 19 where you can enter up to 3,000 characters about what you think about the proposals through a small letterbox entry area. A top tip is to write out in advance what you want to say in this area and copy it in.

Other ways of completing the survey

If you want to complete a paper survey then go to your library and order one from the Enquiry Desk. One will then be sent to you through the post complete with a postage paid reply envelope.

You can also download an Easy Read strategy and survey questionnaire.

If you would prefer to do the survey over the phone, please call 0345 603 7639.

Official On-Line Petition

In addition on the Essex County Council site there is an official on-line petition service with a specific petition for Tarpots Library. If enough people sign this it will be considered as part of the consultation.

Display a Poster

You can also show support for the issue by downloading, printing a displaying a small poster, which says “Save Tarpots Library. Complete the ECC Survey”.

Background to the Petition

Essex Libraries are consulting about revising the Library Service in Essex. Under the proposals the three libraries  in mainland Castle Point are all designated Tier 3. This means that the County Library service will eventually cease in Benfleet, Hadleigh, and Tarpots within 12 months or so unless volunteers can be found to raise money to fund new premises and run the services themselves.

It has been made clear by the ECC that all three buildings used by the current libraries will not be available and that these will go into the ECC property pool for redevelopment. Any Community Libraries will need to find and pay for a completely new set of properties.

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