Saturday, 10 November 2012

Most Newcastle libraries set to close - Save Our Libraries

Today brought the astonishing news that Newcastle Council plans to close most of the city's libraries. Local paper The Journal reports:

'LIBRARIES are to be closed down across Newcastle as the next round of spending cuts begins. The vast majority of Newcastle’s 18 libraries will either be closed down or handed over to community groups as city chiefs set out £90m of cuts over the next three years.

Only the newly-rebuilt city centre library is said to be safe from the axe. Branch libraries at Blakelaw, Cruddas Park, Denton Burn, Dinnington, Fawdon, Fenham, High Heaton, Jesmond, Moorside, Newbiggin Hall and Walker could all be under threat.

Council bosses will confirm final numbers next week, but are expected to say that those libraries not already part of a customer service centre or shared with another council facility will be axed. Even those locations will come under closer scrutiny to see if community groups can take over.'

The full story is here.

This is a consequence of the massive cuts central government is imposing on local authorities. We need mass campaigning both nationally and locally.

Tyne and Wear Coalition of Resistance is organising an emergency meeting, to plan a campaign in response, for this Wednesday (14 November). There will be a Coalition of Resistance public meeting with children's author Alan Gibbons, from Speak Up For Libraries, at 7pm on Tuesday 20 November.

I will update this with venue details when I have them. If you can help in any way with the campaign, please email



  1. hi Luna17.
    Could you comment on what the current developments are with these library closures? I'm a bit out of touch I'm afraid, had to move abroad because I couldn't get a job in Newcastle... Which libraries in the area are not closing (apart from those above)? Also, what about Northumberland - any good sources?

  2. Hi Warren, There was a terrific campaign but the councillors recently voted through a £100 million package of cuts including library closures. All 10 of the threatened libraries could still close. 5 definitely will, but with the other 5 there's a chance of a reduced service being run as a result of community or private partnerships. There are 18 branch libraries in all, so 8 definitely stay open, 5 are under threat and 5 more are definitely going. I'm afraid I don't know much about Northumberland libraries.