Changes to library services

About this review

South Gloucestershire Libraries provide a statutory service to everyone in South Gloucestershire and this is currently delivered through a network of 13 branch libraries and one mobile library.

Like all councils, we are facing significant funding pressures and through our council savings programme we are working towards delivering £22M of savings a year between now and 2020. Our library service currently costs £2.8million a year to run and has been identified as an area which could potentially contribute towards these savings and a target of £650,000 a year by October 2017 has been agreed as part of the council’s budget.

We know that library services in South Gloucestershire are valued and that users are very satisfied with them, however as budgets reduce we really want to know which services are the most used and valued by library users and whether there are different ways that libraries can be run and managed so that the library budget is used in the most effective and efficient way.


Find out more by reading our consultation document and taking part in our survey

Options under consideration

There are a wide number of library delivery model options across the country, those listed in the consultation document are some of the most common options and South Gloucestershire has been and will continue to liaise with other library authorities to learn from their experiences.

We have explored different ways that we can make this level of savings and have identified that significant levels of savings can only be achieved by changing opening hours where staffing is funded by the Council, or by reducing the number of libraries as this makes up the majority of the current library budget.

Having looked at these different delivery models, and the circumstances in South Gloucestershire, we have identified three ideas in order to achieve the savings targets within the library service and we are seeking views on these and alternative options from interested stakeholders. Further information about these options is available in the consultation document

  • Option 1: could affect Chipping Sodbury Library, the mobile library and opening times at all libraries across South Gloucestershire. We would seek volunteers and alternative external funding to minimise the reduction in opening hours on a local basis. We estimate that this option would save approx. £500,000 per year, meaning that additional savings would still need to be found from library or other council services.
  • Option 2: could see Chipping Sodbury library and the mobile library no longer funded by South Gloucestershire Council as per option one and libraries categorised as either a main library or a satellite library and resourced accordingly. External funding and volunteers could be used to minimise the impact of reduced staffing and opening hours. This option would deliver savings in the realm of £600,000 to £630,000 per annum and is the council’s preferred option at this stage as it keeps as many libraries open as possible, while delivering significant savings.
  • Option 3: could see all libraries closed except five main libraries. These are currently proposed as Kingswood, Yate, Patchway, Thornbury and Bradley Stoke.   It would deliver savings in the realms of £1m.
  • Other options: These are just three ideas for how the council could make the savings to library services and illustrates the tough choices that these funding reductions could have. These options are not set and we fully expect them to evolve as a result of this consultation and conversations with service users and local communities over the coming months. The council is therefore very keen to hear from local people, service users, staff, local communities and other interested parties of any alternative suggestions or ideas for the future provision of library services with reduced funding.

How can I find out more, get involved and have a say?

Further information

To support this consultation, the council is making available a wide range of information and this maybe updated throughout the consultation period:

Ways to have your say

You can find out more or tell us your views by:

  • Completing our consultation survey (also available to download and return to us)
  • Email:   
  • Come along to one of our consultation events - check the calendar for details
  • Write to: FREEPOST RTCT-JXLE-EETT, South Gloucestershire Council, Corporate Research & Consultation Team, Library Consultation, Civic Centre, High Street, Kingswood, BRISTOL, BS15 9TR
  • Phone: 01454 868154

We will be holding staffed drop in sessions at every library during the consultation period where you can find out more and ask questions. Details of these sessions and any other consultation events or meetings can be found on our calendar.

If you would like someone to talk to your group or organisation about these proposals, please contact us using the details above to arrange.

Other types of representations such as petitions, videos, links to social media etc. can also be sent to these contact points so that they can be considered as part of the consultation.

If you would like to promote this consultation within your local community, please contact us to discuss how we maybe able to assist. You can request copies of our consultation poster or download a copy to display in local places.

Press and media enquiries should be made to:

This consultation has now closed and we are analysing the results, which will be published here in due course.


  • Opened
    22 Feb 2016 at 09:00
  • Closed
    13 May 2016 at 23:59


Consultation Topic
  • Adult learning & skills
  • Arts, culture & heritage
  • Children and young people
  • Customer service and satisfaction
  • Democracy and participation
  • Education and early years
  • Equalities issues
  • Local economy & business issues
  • Older people
  • Spending and budget
  • Sport & leisure
  • Voluntary and community sector issues
Geographical area
  • Almondsbury
  • Bitton
  • Boyd Valley
  • Bradley Stoke Central and Stoke Lodge
  • Bradley Stoke North
  • Bradley Stoke South
  • Charfield
  • Chipping Sodbury
  • Cotswold Edge
  • Dodington
  • Downend
  • Emersons Green
  • Filton
  • Frampton Cotterell
  • Frenchay and Stoke Park
  • Hanham
  • Kings Chase
  • Ladden Brook
  • Longwell Green
  • Oldland Common
  • Parkwall
  • Patchway
  • Pilning and Severn Beach
  • Rodway
  • Severn
  • Siston
  • Staple Hill
  • Stoke Gifford
  • Thornbury North
  • Thornbury South and Alveston
  • Westerleigh
  • Winterbourne
  • Woodstock
  • Yate Central
  • Yate North
Marking a consultation as relevant to a particular audience indicates that it may be of special relevance to people within that group. It doesn't, however, mean that other groups wont find the consultation of interest - we welcome responses from everybody.
For example, education issues may be of particular interest to Parents & Guardians, and so will be shown to people searching the system for parenting issues, but the views of others (eg: Business, Faith Groups) are also relevant.