Monday 17 June 2024
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Nottingham City Council receives £124,000 Arts Council England funding for library improvements

Nottingham City Council has been granted £124,355 by the Arts Council England (ACE) as part of their Library Improvement Fund (Round 2).

The funding will be used to modernise six libraries across the city, enhancing both the library environment and technology.

The project, titled “Counter Culture – Transforming the way we engage with our customers”, aims to better support local residents’ needs and increase the efficiency of library operations. The total project value is £142,455, which includes in-kind value for library staff resource time, IT purchases, and investment in frontline staff training.

The six libraries set to benefit from the funding are Clifton, Bilborough, St Ann’s Valley, Bulwell Riverside, Southglade Park, and Strelley Road.

Planned improvements include replacing large library staff desks with smaller staff pods, extending the tablet loaning scheme, replacing library flooring at Bilborough and Southglade Park libraries, and purchasing a range of soft furnishings for public use.

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The improvements aim to make the libraries more welcoming and inviting, driving up visitor numbers. The more compact and modern staff desks will enable staff to work in a more agile way within the public library area to better support customer needs and enquiries.

The expansion of the tablet loaning scheme to three additional libraries will extend digital access opportunities across city communities, helping to reduce digital poverty in more deprived areas. The scheme has already proven successful at The Dales and Meadows libraries, particularly with young adult and teenage audiences.

The project is set to start in April 2023 and end in March 2026. The Council’s financial commitment to the project, a £10,600 investment on IT purchases and staff training, has been identified as a requirement to ensure ongoing library operational and service delivery efficiencies and improvements.

The decision to accept the funding was taken by Frank Jordan, Corporate Director of Communities, Environment & Resident Services.

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