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Lib Dem minister says Brockworth library has bright future

By This is Gloucestershire  |  Posted: April 13, 2011

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A SENIOR government minister has praised plans which will see Brockworth's library run by members of the community.

On a visit to the village to give councillors and candidates her support ahead of local elections, Equalities Minister Lynne Featherstone was given a tour of the revamped library, and told of plans to run the facility from the community.

She met candidates, parish councillors and staff at both the library and community centre, but also had a message for voters ahead of the elections on May 5.

She said: "The whole country recognises we have got to start living within our means.

"It's like if you earn £100 a week and spend £120, that is a deficit and you're never going to get clear unless you sort it out.

"When they come down to council level, then it is that local authority which is making a difference."

She was full of praise to public figures, who had put the bid to take on the doomed library together, and urged people to get out and vote on May 5 to play their part.

She said: "It's quite clear that the county council has made a decision that this library will go, and I think you've got to at some point take responsibility for the budgets you control.

"So whilst, yes of course, the coalition has made cuts across the country, how people influence them in their local area is down to their local authority."

She also said people power was the big difference.

She added: "What you've got here is the council saying they are going to close the libraries, and local councillors who are standing up and saying 'oh no you're not'.

"Where local parishes and people and organisations have the enthusiasm to do it, there can be no better way forward.

"Then it can become a thing which is not statutory, not just already there, but it's there because people want it and people are prepared to run it."

The minister, a Liberal Democrat, was also full of praise for residents.

"Brockworth has an energy and an enthusiasm which will be very powerful," she said.

"The library looks beautiful, because it was refurbished and it's going to become an even bigger heart to the community."

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    Anon, Brockworth  |  April 19 2011, 5:17PM

    I personally think it¿s great that a minister found time to visit Brockworth. Admittedly, it¿s all electioneering, what with lib dem councillors fighting to keep their seats, but it¿s still nice for the area to be noticed for a change. It¿s still more noticed than we¿re being paid by Hawthorne and Co in Shire Hall, not to mention Tewkesbury Borough Council and our esteemed MP, who I doubt knows where Brockworthy is.

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    Condemned, Glos  |  April 13 2011, 5:49PM

    Could this BE any more ironic!! The "Equalities" Minister comes and congratulates the plans to take away council run library services from the poorest communities and to strong arm them into paying twice for them?? Library proposals that are set to be challenged in the courts for contravening the Equalities Act!! You could not make it up! She walked right into the Tory PR machine and really should have done her research first. The Lib Dems are a joke!! perhaps she should have had a word with her colleague Mr Horwood who has signed a petition against these plans first! oh dear. Perhaps she would like to share these wonderful plans with the rest of us who have been shut out by the council!

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    Tom, Hucclecote  |  April 13 2011, 2:33PM

    I for one would like to know what the heck this MP Lynne Featherstone who is currently fighting for Hornsey & Wood Green got to do with our area!!!!!!!!!! Perhaps she would be better off serving her constituents than putting her nose into our County??? It is fine when you consider that Brockworth Library has had major work done to it so it looks pristine but how about the other less than adiquate Libraries in the more deprived areas of this County? Who will take on the responsibilty for the upkeep of them on and spend the relevant cash required to bring them up to standard? As most of us are aware that these buildings have through Council dithering been left to run down or is this their way of being able to get rid of them due to lack of funding???