Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Digest: Spending on libraries falls by £25m

  • Comment

Councils reduced funding for libraries by a total of £25m in the last financial year, research has found.

The Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy analysis revealed investment in libraries across Great Britain fell from £944m in 2014-15 to £919m in 2015-16.

The total number of libraries in Great Britain fell from 3,917 to 3,850 during the same period.

Cipfa said a 5.3% reduction in the number of paid library staff coincided with a 7.5% increase in the level of volunteers.

The research highlighted the continuation of year-on-year decreases in council spending on libraries since 2010. 

Chief executive Rob Whiteman said “tough decisions” had to be made at a time of “unprecedented budgetary pressures”.

He added: “But despite the grim outlook, libraries are continuing to transform and innovate, adapting to changing visitor habits and providing a raft of new services and offerings.”

Last week, the Government’s Libraries Taskforce pledged £4m to support disadvantaged communities through libraries.

The Cipfa research found Birmingham Library was the most visited library in the country, with 1.6m visitors in 2015-16.

The library offers adult learning facilities, immigration advice services and supplements its funding through private hiring.

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions.

Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.