Thursday, 20 January 2011


Oxfordshire County Council has proposed that 20 libraries in the county including Botley Library, will close unless volunteers step forward to run them. On 13th January around 400 people attended the Parish Council Meeting in St Peter and Paul Church in Botley regarding this closure.

After the meeting the Save the Botley Library campaign was formed.

The Save Botley Library campaign has been set up to fight against proposals to either close Botley Library or for it to be transferred to the responsibility of the local community. The campaign opposes both of these options and seeks to ensure that the Botley library remains an active part of the Oxfordshire Library group, staffed by professional librarians.

If Botley library were to close, the nearest library to Botley would be the Oxford Central library, meaning either a bus journey or car trip, making the library visit a significantly longer process.

The Council proposal total ignores the role of Botley Library as part of our community, which is much more than the issuing of books. This is borne out by the fact that the number of visits to the library exceed to number of books issue. The professional librarians at Botley provide advice not only through books in the reference library, but also for those who do not have access to the Internet and e-mail at home. The library provides the only facility to book time on computers in Botley, which the council made much of at the time of introduction. It is also the only place in Botley to hire DVDs and to make photocopies. The library is also used by local Primary Schools during lesson time, a facility highly valued by the school and pupils alike. The suggestion from the Council that improvements in school libraries make up for this is vacuous.
Please join our campaign to help ensure that this much-loved community facility remains open and staffed by professional librarians.

If we all work together we can win!


1. Join our campaign. Get in touch with us by emailing


In the first instance, you can contact the following to express your opposition to the County Council‘s policy on libraries. A letter has much more impact than an email, but an email is better than nothing! (In any case, it will be helpful if you can copy your email/letter to this address: (
To the County Council:

Cllr Keith Mitchell,
Leader of Oxfordshire County Council,
County Hall,
Oxford OX1 1ND

John Jackson, Director for Social and Community Services
Social and Community Services,
County Hall,
New Road,
Oxford, OX1 1ND

Our local MP:

Nicola Blackwood MP
House of Commons,

3. Sign both the paper petition and the online petition to Save Botley library. (the petition expires on 27th January).

1 comment:

  1. Great to see this up and running, well done, Neil! It was also very cheering to go to the huge Town Hall meeting on 20th Jan and realize that big though it was, it wasn't any bigger than the one we held in Botley a week before. I'm hopeful that we may manage to hold on to our excellent library in the end. It certainly won't be for lack of trying if we don't!