Save Burnage Library

Burnage library opened in 1974, replacing the previous, fire damaged library. Since then, it has provided the community with an essential service for learning and leisure and has maintained a central position in the community as other council services have eroded over the years.

Locally, it is the last surviving public council facility, which provides an essential resource for young and old alike and we are fighting to stop its merciless closure. Please lend your support our campaign and help keep Burnage library open!

Campaign meetings are public and take place at Burnage Community Centre on Wednesday evenings, 6pm - 8pm until the decision on the consultation on the 17th April 2013.

Sign the online petition at;

Alternatively, sign the petitions at the health centre, library and other outlets and don't forget to like our Facebook page at:

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Last Instalment in the Trilogy - Library Use

"It's shortsighted not to view the education of a future generation of Americans as a priority for all Americans."- Mel Martinez

The final analysis document submitted to the city council's consultation as part of the Save Burnage Library campaign was the 'Library Use and Value for Money Metrics' document found at:

For the 2008 library strategy, Manchester city council's Library and Information Services (MLIS) included a number of actions and metrics which were used to indicate the value for money that Manchester City Council was getting per transaction (issues and reissues, PC use etc.).

The Save Burnage Library campaign conducted a similar assessment and what is interesting is that when the comparators are applied to Burnage Library individually, a number of factors can be see:

  1. If we look at library use per 1,000 head of population, Manchester city council are not closing the bottom 6 worst performers. Nor are they closing the top 6 most expensive. Indeed, 3 of the 6 that are set to close are in the top 10 best performers whilst only 1 is in the bottom 10.
  2. Looking at the cost per transaction, which is how many pounds it costs Manchester city council per individual borrowing of a book. We know that Burnage Library costs £43,000 to run and in 2012 there were 45,346 transactions (again, including PC usage, issues and resissues etc). This means that each borrow of a book costs Manchester city council around 95p per transaction for someone to Borrow a book in Burnage library. Contrast this with the Manchester average from MLIS's own library strategy, and we can see this is incredibly good value, since the Manchester average in 2005-06 is £1.55
  3. Using Manchester City Council’s own indicators of ‘value for money’ defined by MLIS for the 2008 library strategy, closing Burnage library will not result in greater value for money across MLIS. Indeed, it will cost more per transaction. Each transaction costing £1.57 instead of £1.55 just by closing Burnage library alone! This is because MCC are closing some of the best performing libraries, leaving the worse performing libraries open.
  4. Burnage Library is the 9th most used library per 1,000 head of population in the 23 active libraries of Manchester. So any statements about Burnage being a low performing library are simply false. 
  5. The top 10 list of library utilisation is made up of 3 libraries set to close under the proposals. 
  6. The bottom 10 performers (when measured using borrowing) only include one library set to close
  7. An example top 10 list of library utilisation, with standardised opening times (to 35 hours a week), includes 4 of the libraries set to close and Burnage would be the 4th most used library in that list.
  8. Steps could be taken to generate an extra £109,622 of income from standardising Blu-ray and DVD charges, as well as increasing AV stock lending fees by 50p.
I for one sincerely hope Manchester city council reconsider their plans and keep Burnage library open. The combination of the three impact analyses on transport, literacy and neighbourhoods and this analysis on value for money, you can see Manchester City Council would make a catastrophic mistake by closing neighbourhood libraries. 


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