In response to chairman Richardson's plea to preserve the funding of CLSAC (Camden Local Studies and Archives Centre), which was already cut back a year ago, Cllr Tulip Siddiq, the Camden Councillor with special responsibility for Culture, has written that the funding for this specialised service cannot be protected to any greater extent than any other parts of the libraries services, largely on the grounds that the Camden-wide consultation revealed that "the cost per visit [to CLSAC] was higher than to other libraries" (see her letter below).
CHS Council, meeting yesterday evening, pointed out that individual visits to CLSAC take far more time (sometimes amounting to days) than the 20 minutes to select and borrow a book. Enquiries by phone or email, which are not recorded as visits, also take up much qualifieid staff time. Furthermore, all the archiving work, some of it on behalf of the Council itself, which is legally required, is unique to CLSAC. Without it our heritage would be very quickly lost to future generations, and present Camden Council work much impeded.
These points will be made in a joint letter from the CHS Council, which we will post here on the website in due course. Meanwhile, action by all CHS members is urgently needed. If you want to underline the above points, or have others you wish to make, do write or speak to your Councillor and/or write to Cllr Siddiq. Decisions on the library services are due to be made on 31 May, so there's precious little time!