Lincs: The search is on to find a new provider to deliver library services

NEWS: The Gainsborough Standard
NEWS: The Gainsborough Standard

Lincs County Council is starting its search for an external organisation to potentially deliver library services on its behalf.

The authority is currently undertaking a competitive procurement process, following an approach by Greenwich Leisure Limited, a not-for-profit organisation interested in running local libraries.

Tony McGinty, from Lincs County Council, said: “Although we potentially face a second legal challenge, we intend to continue working on the procurement of the new-look service.”

“The need to make substantial savings within the service remains, and it’s important we do what we can to achieve this.”

“And we’re confident that, under our proposals, we can do this in a way that both saves money and creates a library service that is fit for the 21st century.”

Whilst this process is primarily about the library service, the council also operates a number of heritage sites, and a reference to these services will be included in the contract notice, although no decision has been taken on their future.

Tony McGinty added: “The council is currently considering how best to make the £120m of annual savings required as a result of reduced funding and rising demand for services.”

“That means looking at how all our services are delivered, including those relating to culture and heritage.”

“One thing we may want to consider at some point in the future is whether these services could potentially be delivered by someone else on our behalf.”

“And by mentioning them in this contract notice we simply leave that door open.”

“It is unlikely that a decision on the best way forward for these services will be taken before 2016.”

The contract notice for this procurement was published on Thursday 16th April.