Libraries Consultation Phase 2 – have your say, (again)

The first phase of the public consultation has culminated in the Cabinet decision to reduce the reorganisation plan to three options (from five), detailed below.  All allow for a continued library service available on the current site in Shirley.

Option one would mean all libraries remain in council control and be open two fewer days per week, except the central library that would open five days per week. Under option two the council would work in partnership with an organisation to run all 13 libraries, which could include a charity or social enterprise.

Option three would keep eight libraries in council control and open two fewer days a week. The other five would be leased to community groups, with the council providing some staff two days a week, as well as books and IT support.

There were concerns about the costs of repair costs on the Shirley Library building, but the council has identified funding to meet these. This money will be found from the ring-fenced Community Infrastructure Levy which councils can charge to limit the impact of new developments and will additionally give more users out-of-hours access through Open + swipe cards.

Cabinet dropped three other options because they would not have met the savings needed – one that involved closing the five libraries; and two others to lease five libraries to community groups, with either full or reduced hours at the other eight.

Councillor Oliver Lewis, cabinet member for culture and regeneration commented : “We have listened to and acted on residents’ feedback by changing our proposals so that all 13 of our libraries will stay open in a way that would still allow us to make much-needed savings.

“I want to thank everyone who has taken part in the consultation so far, and I would encourage everyone who cares about their libraries to have their say again when we go live with detailed proposals at the beginning of June.”

The 2nd stage of consultation is now open.  Click on this link  Croydon Get Involved to see the survey and other related information.

Croydon Covid-19 Oxford-AZ vaccine walk-in sessions

Please see below a message from Dr Agnelo Fernandes and Matthew Kershaw

The coronavirus vaccine is safe and effective and remains our best protection against Covid-19 and the surest route to a return to normal life.   Millions of people have now received a Covid-19 vaccine and across Croydon we have now delivered over 320,000 doses of the vaccine.

Covid-19 infections rates are currently rising across England with the latest test-and-trace figures showing 45% more infections week-on-week.  The first dose of the vaccine offers a high level of protection, but to get maximum and longer-lasting protection, everyone will need to get a second dose. Across South West London, we are working to tackle the spread of Covid-19 by creating additional opportunities for people to vaccinate, including walk-in clinics.

Over the next week we will be offering the following walk-in clinics in Croydon for the Oxford-AZ vaccine:

  • Selhurst Park, Crystal Palace, SE25 6PU:
    • 9am to 7pm, Friday 11 to Sunday 13 June 2021
  • Centrale Shopping Centre, CR0 1TY:
    • 9am to 7pm, Monday 14 to Sunday 20 June 2021

We will be advertising these walk-in clinics for those who received their first dose of Oxford-AZ before mid-April but have not yet had their second.  We will also be encouraging anyone who is eligible for a first dose to come forward. Anyone under 40 can also come and speak to a clinician about their vaccination options.

These walk-in clinics complement the work we continue to deliver across the borough to vaccinate local people including our GP led vaccination centres, GP and nurse led pop-up clinics across the borough and outreach and engagement work for priority groups locally. As you know, you can read more about the programme on our website at www.swlondonccg.nhs.uk/covid

All those eligible can book a vaccination appointment to suit them online at www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination 

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for everything you are doing to help with the Covid-19 vaccination programme.

Best wishes,

Dr Agnelo Fernandes

GP Borough Lead for Croydon

Bogus Surveyor – Warning

Please be aware, if you are having building work done, resident in Palace View this morning had smartly dressed man knock pretending to be his surveyor, luckily he realised he was not genuine. This appears to be common at the moment, stealing valuables once inside.

Bogus Community Nurses – a warning

Croydon Trading Standards have brought the following to our attention

CROYDON TRADING STANDARDS COMMUNITY ALERT
 
Bogus Community Nurses
 
We have been made aware of two incidents in the Croydon area where service users have been targeted by a man and woman posing as community nurses.
 
The woman has appeared first and distracted the victims, the man has then pushed his way into the home.
This kind of offence usually leads to items being stolen, so please keep items such as wallets, purses and handbags hidden and out of sight.
If you are expecting your Community Nurse and someone you do not know appears at the door, please ask for ID and tell them you need time to check it.
If you are unsure, you can call 020 8274 6195, and explain that you need to check the identification of the person who is at your door.
If possible, whenever someone knocks at your door, please use a chain, spy hole or window to check the identity of the person before you fully open your door.
Anyone who is genuine will not mind being asked, will happily show ID and wait whilst you check. If they do not show you or refuse, DO NOT OPEN YOUR DOOR!
Please keep an eye out for vulnerable neighbours, friends and family members.
The incidents have been reported to the police and are being investigated.
 
If you are a victim of this type of crime call police on 999.
We hope you find this update helpful and interesting, please pass on to your watch/residents.
 
#FeelSafeStaySafe
 
Your Croydon Neighbourhood Watch Team

Children’s Centre – the future – consultation

We have received the following email …

Dear Parents/Carers

The Best Start Children’s Centre consultation is now live and part of the proposal is to close Shirley Childrens Centre

Children’s Centres are able to provide social and practical support to all new parents and families with children aged up to 5 years and can be a lifeline for families particularly those in need of support.The council are currently consulting on a new model for children’s centre in light of the current financial challenges it faces meaning savings have to be made and some services may need to be delivered differently or reduced. The proposed model is a three hub and six spoke model with a dedicated hub in the north, central and south of the borough.It is so important for your voice to be heard in light of the proposal and any ideas you may have. The final proposals will inform Cabinet in summer 2021 prior to tendering for new contracts.You can view the full How to have your say?
https://getinvolved.croydon.gov.uk/project/692


• Complete the online survey before Midnight, 13th June 2021
https://getinvolved.croydon.gov.uk/project/692


• Request a paper copy of the survey to you by calling 020 8760 5453 and return it by 13th June 2021• Request the survey and consultation information in a different format or language by calling 020 8760 5453
Thank you
Kind regards,


Shirley Library – some good news

The following has been received from Irene at Shirley Library :-

Just to let you know that from 17th May we will be operating a select and collect service at Shirley Library. This will only be on Mondays from 10.30am until 4.00 pm.

Customers can pre-order books by email or phone (staff are on site from 10am – 5pm Mondays but the answerphone is on at other times).  Books can also be ordered online at bit.ly/CroydonLibsCat.

We will contact customers when the books are ready to arrange collection.  I would be grateful if you could spread the word, it will be lovely to see some of our customers again.

Kind regards,

Irene

Shirley Library

Shirley Library update

Following SPRA’s survey of members and the submission made to Council in response to the consultation, we can report some progress. The Committee was contacted by Cllr Olly Lewis (the Cabinet member for Libraries and Rob Hunt a lead Council officer) to discuss our report. On 15 March, a productive meeting by Zoom gave SPRA the opportunity to voice its views, seeking to protect a library on its current site within Shirley. We were also able to receive useful information about the libraries reorganisation.

In essence, the Council has devised four options, ranging from outright closure of the five branches at risk, to a proposal to seek outside contractors to run the Libraries, all with the aim of making a targeted £0.5m saving.  The Council’s Scrutiny Committee has since asked them to reduce the number of options from four possible to two preferred options, for consideration at the Cabinet meeting on 17 May.  If approved, these two options would then form the basis of the 2nd public consultation.  SPRA is unhappy with this approach. We believe all four options should be put to consultation to allow maximum transparency and feedback from the community and have said so.

We will post further updates here.

Let’s get Croydon growing!

Esther Mann from the John Whitgift Foundation has sent us the following about an exciting initiative …

“I work for a local Croydon education and care charity called the John Whitgift Foundation we have launched an exciting new campaign to make Croydon the UK’s greenest Borough, targeting over 400,000 residents, through a community gardening project called ‘Grow With John’.

“The campaign is named after the Founder of the charity, and is seeking to help showcase how affordable, accessible and enjoyable gardening can be to all ages, particularly the benefits to mental health and wellbeing which have been proven to be essential throughout the pandemic.

“The charity is giving away free seed packets to residents in Croydon to help start their growing journey, and also launched a microsite full of local community gardeners of all ages to inspire others at www.growwithjohn.org Beyond our Croydon community, gardening-heavyweights Alan Titchmarsh MBE and the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) are also supporting the ambitious campaign.”