How you can help...
NOW IS THE TIME TO SHOW YOUR SUPPORT AND GET INVOLVED
In the face of significant budget challenges, Surrey County Council (SCC) plans to close the dedicated Perfoming Arts Library at Denbies and split the collection between two Surrey libraries – losing the integrity and sustainability of this unique collection, as well as specialist staff and knowledge.
At its meeting on Thursday 8 February 2018, SCC Communities Select Committee (CSC) adopted recommendations for the future of SPAL which will now be put – alongside recommendations from the council officers – to the full SCC Cabinet on 27 March.
Since the last CSC meeting in November 2017, a new registered charity has been established in a bid to take over the running of this music library, when it became clear that SCC's suggested alternative would not be suitable for the medium-term future of SPAL and its users, and would also still leave SPAL at the mercy of further SCC budget cuts in coming years.
NewSPAL has been established by four users of SPAL, and representatives of Making Music (The Chief Executive, Barbara Eifler), FOSPAL (Friends of SPAL Chair Mark Welling) and IAML (International Association of Music Librarians' UK President Anna Wright), as Trustees.
On 8 February, councillors expressed much sympathy for NewSPAL’s proposal, but fell short of recommending it outright as an option, because NewSPAL was asking them to finance the transition to the new charity, and councillors felt unable to promise any money to SPAL whatsoever after 1 April 2018.
* Please see the update on our Home page.
NOW IS THE TIME TO SHOW
YOUR SUPPORT AND GET INVOLVED
How you can support NewSPAL
If YOU value the thriving Performing Arts in Surrey and beyond...
Please pledge your support (time, money, premises, expertise…)
…and register for updates or contact us
NewSPAL needs evidence by 15 March * to show that it will be able to demonstrate to Cabinet that its proposed solution is both supported by users and that its plans are feasible, represent no risk to the collection and maintain at least as good a service as the fall-back option SCC themselves are proposing (and which Making Music, FOSPAL and IAML, as well as many users, think will be wholly inadequate).
Unless there is a credible case for NewSPAL by the time of the cabinet meeting on 27 March *, SCC will implement their option from April which involves moving the collection, splitting drama and music into two libraries, and having no dedicated or specialist staff.
Please register your interest and any support you can pledge through THIS SURVEY, ideally by 15 March*!
Please feel free to share this web page with others who may have an interest in the future of this vital service.
* Please see the update on our Home page.
Why your action is needed...
In order to get what NewSPAL feels would be the right decision at the SCC Cabinet meeting on 27 March* (namely one recommending NewSPAL as the best option for the future of SPAL), NewSPAL is now launching an urgent campaign to ask users and potential users for their support by way of pledges – practical help, funds, ideas, volunteer time - to implement a move to a new building (Denbies is not sustainable, even in the short term) and to the new charity.
NewSPAL needs some evidence by 15 March* so that it will be able to demonstrate to Cabinet that its proposed solution is both supported by users and that its plans are feasible, represent no risk to the collection and maintain at least as good a service as the fall-back option SCC themselves are proposing (and which Making Music, FOSPAL and IAML, as well as many users, think will be wholly inadequate).
We can still bid to take over SPAL, even if the Cabinet meeting on 27 March* does not decide for NewSPAL’s plans, but we think it is important to move as quickly as possible to prevent the collection being dispersed and start suffering deterioration, so the deadline we have set ourselves to attract enough support, funding and volunteers is by August 2018.
NewSPAL -- The Performing Arts Library in Surrey
The Surrey Performing Arts Library is award winning and one of the three largest in England
Help create a secure future for the Library