Cheshire East tops national libraries survey

A survey by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) has found that Cheshire East’s libraries have outperformed many others, featuring as the top unitary authority for the number of library books loaned per 1,000 population.

Cheshire East also features as number one in the North West and fifth in the whole of the UK. Cheshire East boasts 17 libraries, including a mobile library, and collectively loaned 1.84 million items last year. Macclesfield – is recognised as the busiest in the borough, with 226,643 visits and more than 296,600 issues.

Eleven of the borough’s libraries are open for 30 hours or more each week, with two libraries – Crewe and Macclesfield – open for longer than 45 hours.

Liz Wardlaw, cabinet member for health, said: “The findings in this survey are outstanding and I am extremely proud of the library service and our staff who go that extra mile to ensure that borrowers and members receive a thoroughly enjoyable and worthwhile experience.

“Libraries are far more than just a place to borrow a book to read. I do hope that we are able to maintain this excellent record and ensure that, whatever the financial challenges ahead, we can continue to deliver a first-class library service to our residents.”

Joanne Shannon, the borough’s library services manager, said: “To be the most successful in the whole of the North West and out of all the 55 unitary authorities, is a tremendous achievement for us and I am extremely proud of Cheshire East libraries and the service we deliver to our residents and members.

“Our summer reading challenge was another success story for us and it is so rewarding to see so many people in Cheshire East enjoy accessing our libraries and taking advantage of our reading stock, multi-media resource and our computers.”

The CIPFA survey is the recognised authoritative analysis of the country’s library service, looking into books issued, closures, spending and investment.

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