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Save Ventnor Library Campaign Launches

Some of us in Ventnor have just started a Save Ventnor Library Campaign.

One thing we’ll be doing is asking local shops and businesses to have petitions for people to sign, which can be returned to the campaign care of Ventnor Community Projects in the Community Cafe at 1 Albert Street.

We want to have a local campaign for our library in Ventnor, but we also want to link up with other campaigns around the Island to keep our local libraries open and staffed by the librarians.

Anybody who’s concerned about the proposed cuts, to libraries or anything else in Ventnor (such as Ventnor Botanic Garden, other parks and gardens, lifeguards for the beach, public toilets, youth centre, the list goes on…) might want to go along to the Ventnor Town Concil meeting at 1900 on Monday 13 December at the Winter Gardens to ask the Town Council to let the Isle of Wight Council know what we think.

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9 Responses to Save Ventnor Library Campaign Launches

  1. Alan Davies says:

    Hi, I have just read on the County Press website that our library is to close next March. I believe this library is of great value to the village, and not only as a library. It is a community centre, information centre, a meeting place where many varied activities take place and much more to many others I am sure.

    I would like to get together with a group of like minded people and try and reverse the decision made by the Isle of Wight Council.

    Alan Davies.

  2. Alan Davies says:

    Should of said, I live in Brighstone.

  3. Alan Davies says:

    Save Our Services – Isle of Wight – This is a Facebook group through which all groups can come together. They held a meeting in Ryde last night at which budget cuts nationally and locally were discussed and what alternatives could be put forward.
    These are the groups admins – Jackie Hawkins, Geoff Lumley, Jill Wareham,
    Paddy Noctor, Geoffrey Hughes, Rebecca Eastgate, Stephanie Godfrey,
    Sarah Watkinson, Tina Richards, Wendy Moth, James Lucas and Robin Sivapalan.
    Some of them may already be known to you!

    • Rebecca Brough says:

      I am prepared to support groups to try to save libraries, but am not a member of Facebook. Is there another way to support, as well as writing to local councillors etc…?
      I was at the library meeting at the Quay Arts on January 6th – the feedback that people were giving was fantastic and all of them extremely valid points. I was pleased to see a number of councillors on board as well. It is madness that the council are closing this number of libraries. Cowes library opened in 1941, in the middle of WWII. If they could manage that then, then why can’t we manage to keep them open now?? I’m sure there can be creative ways to keep libraries (and other public services) going through this crisis. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like the council are prepared to do that…

  4. Christine Gale says:

    As regular visitors to Ventnor we make use of the Library for Access to the Web/E-Mail. We would be prepared to pay for this Access if necessary if this were introduced to retain the Library. We also visit for Local Information and for displays/events. Please do not remove this valuable life-line

  5. Alan Davies says:

    A public meeting hosted by Unison will be held at Quay Arts, Newport, at 7pm on January 6th to discuss the future of the libraries.

  6. Chris Welsford says:

    I am the Independent County Councillor for Ventnor East, home to Ventnor Library, threatened by closure as a part of the “deficit reduction austerity measures” so eagerly embraced by this Conservative county council.

    I attended the library meeting last night but didn’t speak because I wanted to listen to what members of the public and others had to say about the proposed cuts in the limited time available. What I heard reinforced my view that most of these cuts are politically motivated and socially divisive. As most people who follow local politics know, I am left leaning and believe that civilised states should provide good quality public services paid for from progressive taxation. That is to say redistribution of wealth that enables all citizens to enjoy a decent standard of living and quality of life. The alternative, in my view, is a potentially divided society and increasing political apathy, as those who “have” relax and enjoy their wealth and those who “have-not” struggle to survive with little time or inclination to engage in anything as apparently pointless as voting: after all, what good does voting do when all it delivers is less. That is my opinion of what is happening now.

    The idea that the population of the United Kingdom should have to suffer because of the huge debt that has been incurred as a direct result of the banking bailout is ludicrous. Attempting to pay back the debt so quickly is a political opportunity for those who hold a political view diametrically opposed to my own and who believe that the state has no business redistributing wealth and providing public services such as libraries.

    I reject and oppose the austerity measures at a national and local level. We should be prepared to raise taxes – not VAT but corporation, income and capital gains tax – in order to ensure this country’s public services are safeguarded. We should be prepared to use the nationalised banks to help refund what has been invested. But that would be at odds with Conservative thinking. At a local level I am disgusted by the way in which the Conservative ruling group have embraced and accepted the principles espoused by the Coalition Government. The Isle of Wight appears to be amongst the leading “cutting” authorities in England.

    The Conservative ruling group is calling on residents to come up with alternative ways to save money. Considering the money we spend on salaries, supposedly to ensure that local and national government is able to attract the brightest and most able candidates to senior positions, this seems to indicate that they have no workable alternatives or more likely they recognise that the alternative are likely to be politically suicidal and thus they want residents to present these alternatives to public funding. That way it’s your idea and not theirs!

    As an elected representative I am in no doubt as to my mandate from the electorate – to safeguard and improve Public Services for the residents of my ward and the Island generally. I will speak out and vote against the cuts. I will argue, as I have done in previous debates, that we should be prepared to raise taxes and that deficit reduction can be achieved without radical cuts to public services. Practically though opposition to these cuts needs to come from Conservative members who in the past have voted en masse to cut public services. We can only hope that on February 23rd enough of them will see the folly of what is being proposed and vote against. Until then we should let the ruling group tell us what the alternatives to closure are. After all, it’s their role to come up with policy. There may be decent alternatives to some of the cuts but in my view such alternatives won’t benefit the library service, which over the years, has already been shaved down to the bare bones. We need to keep our local libraries open and staffed by professional librarians.

    Those who share my view should simply say no to the cuts through the consultation. We can deal with the alternatives if the cutters get their way. We should not forget that Town and Parish Councils may then be in a position to take on some of these services so not all would be lost but in the mean time, those of us that have them, should be prepared to stick to our principles.

  7. James Leavey says:

    I was the James ‘Levy’ who attended last Thursday’s meeting. Just thought I’d let you know that I have just been interviewed by Isle of Wight Radio and this will go out as news tomorrow afternoon. I have also asked BBC Radio Solent to wish Cowes Library (my local, I use it almost every day) a very Happy 70th Birthday tomorrow (and passed this story to my friends at Isle of Wight County Press. For the record, I am a freelance journalist, professional blog writer (every week for the past 2 years for Virgin), and a published author (type my name into google, if you really want to know). Keep up the good work. We cannot allow the Council to go ahead with such a dreadful kneejerk ill-considered action.

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