After recent communication with NCC, I can provide an update on Moulton and Long Buckby libraries and the process that can be expected in the near future.
Interested parties from these libraries are in communication with the Council regarding the potential to operate an Independent Library.
The Council has put in place a process to work through the stages of community organisations and other groups moving towards delivering an Independent Library. Groups are currently working on developing an Expression of Interest. This is to be completed by 25th June 2018. Applications will then be considered by an Evaluation Panel and then a final Moderation Panel.
NCC will be requesting some further detail from groups regarding their cash flow forecast and their vision and commitment to operating an independent library. This will help them to identify those groups that will move forward to the Business Planning process. NCC will include information on how they plan to evaluate applications. They will also respond to any further clarification questions.
The Moderation Panel will be chaired by the Portfolio Holder, Cecile Irving-Swift, and with attendance also from a colleague Councillor and senior NCC officers.
An Appeals Panel process has been built in for those applications not deemed to have met the standard, final appeals will be considered by the Leader of the Council, Matt Golby, and Finance Director, Mark McLaughlin.
For those organisations that will be moving forward, the final stage is the Business Planning stage which includes organisations entering into the legal process regarding a freehold purchase or lease agreement, and completing a business plan and project plan. Meetings will start to be held with NCC to move these projects forward.
If you have any further questions about the process, please contact NCC: IndependentLibraries@northamptonshire.gov.uk.