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Residents are being asked for their views on proposed changes to the way mobile library services are delivered.

East Sussex County Council is proposing to combine 17 mobile library stops and provide services to communities in a ‘different, more efficient’ way.

The changes, which would also affect the mobile office service, would reduce the cost of the service by £131,600 from £259,600.

A consultation into the proposals was approved by cabinet last week and residents will be able to have their say before the consultation closes at the end of July.

The proposals include combining stops in communities where the mobile library visits two or more sites located a mile or less apart.

Mobile library services would also be delivered on a three week rota instead of the current two week schedule.

In addition, mobile library visits to 22 sheltered housing units and care settings will be replaced by the existing Care Home Service and Home Library Service.

These services offer either free bulk loans of books and audio books exchanged regularly or a volunteer home delivery of library items to those who have mobility issues, are housebound or have caring responsibilities.

The county council’s mobile office would be replaced by visits by tutors to settings in local communities where requested, rather than on a rota basis.

The consultation will run until Thursday July 31.

Feedback from this will be reported to East Sussex County Council’s cabinet later in the year, before a decision on the proposals is made.

The consultation can be viewed and completed online at www.eastsussex.gov.uk/haveyoursay while paper copies of the consultation will also be available on the mobile vehicles and on request in library branches.

There are currently 127 stops made by the mobile library and six by the mobile office.

The number of visits to mobile libraries in 2012/13 was 22,767 – one per cent of the total number of visits to East Sussex libraries which was 2.1 million.

 

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