Lancashire Council considers bids to run services under threat

Lancashire County Council is in the process of considering 50 offers from community groups bidding to run services which the local authority has announced it will no longer be able to afford.

The council has said it plans to close 40 libraries and withdraw funding for five museums as part of savings worth £65 million over the next two years. Funding is also being cut for Queen Street Mill, Helmshore Mills Textile Museum, Museum of Lancashire, Judges' Lodgings and Fleetwood Museum.

However, a number of community groups have submitted business plans in the hope of acquiring the power to run the services privately.

The local authority has said it would lean towards those bids which would ‘demonstrate exceptional community benefit’.

David Borrow, the council's deputy leader, commented: "I'm very grateful for all the interest people have shown in using these buildings for their community.

"We need to ensure that proposals are sustainable, and also that the business case adds up for the council and wider community in relation to these valuable assets."