Croydon Library Consultation – Proposed Closure of 4 Libraries

Croydon Council is proposing to consult residents on changes to its library service that will make it easier for more people across the borough to enjoy books and activities. Proposals include longer opening hours including weekends, improved facilities in fewer library buildings, and more staff to provide a new outreach service.

A report to the council’s cabinet meeting next week details extensive research into the borough’s library service, following service reductions made since the council’s financial collapse in April 2020. The report can be found on the council website.

Since the changes were introduced, the council has been listening to residents and staff who have said that despite best efforts, the service model isn’t working – that it doesn’t provide the opening hours needed or enough of the services that residents want and need.

The cabinet report sets out the detailed research findings and proposed recommendations for a more sustainable library service. It proposes longer opening hours including weekends, with more events and services available to residents, by reducing the number of buildings and investing in well-used sites. No job losses are proposed, with the council intending to use the majority of the money saved from building costs to increase the number of library staff to provide the extended opening and outreach services. Cabinet will be asked for approval to start consultation on the proposals.

To make these improvements, four library buildings; Bradmore Green, Broad Green, Sanderstead, and Shirley are proposed to be closed. This proposal is based on analysis of the buildings including visitor numbers, size and condition of the buildings, the size and needs of the communities they serve and running costs.

Six libraries (Central, Ashburton, Thornton Heath, Norbury, Selsdon and Coulsdon) are proposed to be open five to six days a week, including Saturdays, and will deliver an extensive offer of books, wifi, PCs, study spaces and events. These libraries have all proved to be well-used, accessible buildings that meet local needs. Future investment in these sites is recommended to improve the facilities and extend the opening times and services available.

Activist’s research found three areas — New Addington, Purley and South Norwood — need library services, but low visitor numbers suggest the current set-up isn’t working. The council is proposing to introduce community hubs in these areas, where a library would be available alongside other services such as family and adult education services and community partnerships.

Through the consultation, residents will be asked for their views and ideas for developing the offer in New Addington, Purley and South Norwood to help design how library services can be improved in these areas, to make them more accessible and better used by local people.

Other library services – such as the home library service and the extensive digital offer, including e-books and magazines, online learning and training resources – are set to continue and be improved as part of the future service.

A 10-week consultation is set to launch after cabinet and residents are encouraged to have their say on the proposals and share their ideas for improving the effectiveness and efficiency of the library service. Details will be available from Croydon libraries and on the council’s Get Involved website.

The council is keen to hear the views of those affected by the proposed library closures, including any impacts and alternative options to closing buildings and improving the service for residents. The consultation will also ask for ideas for future library outreach services and community venues that could be used to reach more people. Feedback received will help the council develop further recommendations which will go back to cabinet in May 2024.

Trinity School Triathlon – 26 June 2022

On Sunday June 26th 2022, Trinity School is, organising its tenth youth triathlon.

.One of the main objectives behind the London 2012 Olympics was youth involvement in sport, and so the Trinity Triathlon was created as a legacy event to help stimulate the future involvement of young people in sport, in Croydon and beyond.

How might it affect you?
Triathlons have three phases: swimming, cycling and running. The swim and run phases will take place on site at Trinity School and the cycle phase will be on the Addiscombe Road. To comply with British Triathlon Federation rules, the road will be closed from the Shirley Road roundabout to just before Sandilands and Ashburton Roads, both of which will remain open. All buses will be diverted via the Lower Addiscombe Road.

The closure will be from the junction with the Shirley Road, westward to just before Sandilands and Ashburton Road. The agreed closure will be in effect from 6.00am until 11.00am on Sunday, at which point Transport for London and Croydon Council have instructed that normal traffic flow must resume. The first cyclist will be on the road at 7.15am, and the last at about 10.25am, at which time the process of re-opening will take place.

If you live on the closed section of the Addiscombe Rd or Whitethorn Gardens, during the closure access will only be possible in an emergency or under special circumstances. We apologise in advance for any inconvenience this may cause.

If you live in the side roads adjacent to the Addiscombe Road:
There will be no restrictions on traffic movement; you will not be able to use the Addiscombe Road from Upfield Road or Mapledale Avenue to the south and Green Court Gardens, Birch Tree Way, Fryston Avenue, Cheyne Walk or Northampton Road to the north. By taking other connecting roads you will be able to get westwards towards Croydon or eastwards toward West Wickham and Beckenham.

Can I watch the race?
We hope this will be an event which the whole community can enjoy, and local residents are encouraged to come and watch the cycling and cheer the athletes on; you may even spot some future Olympic stars! Your support will be appreciated by all who are involved.

I hope that any disruption or inconvenience to you is minimal and that the positive aims of the day help make this worthwhile.

If you have any further queries, please email mdr@trinity.croydon.sch.uk

Gardening for Wellbeing with Lynette

We are extremely excited to let you know that our Volunteer Lynette will be soon starting her Gardening for Wellbeing club at the Wilderness. Don’t miss this opportunity to join a relaxed and inclusive environment, surrounded by the beauty and tranquillity of the Wilderness garden.

We only have 6 places available. Be the first one to sign up.

The 5 weeks programme of Gardening for Wellbeing is aimed at anyone age 55+ living in the community.

The programme focuses on the benefits of growing your own plants: vegetables, herbs and house plants. At the end of the programme, you will:

  • learn the ethos and approaches to re-growing food
  • learn how to regrow food from scraps and how to care and manage your plants
  • learn how to propagate house plants
  • contribute to our kitchen garden
  • attend an art & craft with nature workshop

Activities suitable to all. The Wilderness is a wheel-chair friendly garden with accessible toilets on-site.

For more information, contact southlondon@mha.org.uk