Brent wins library closure JR

Brent Council has today won a judicial review over its library closure plans. 

Mr Justice Ouseley dismissed the claim against the council, found in Brent Council’s favour on every point and refused a leave to appeal. 

The council took the decision to close six of its twelve libraries in April when its Executive adopted a Library Transformation programme that would implement a broad range of improvements to the service overall. These included seven-day-a-week extended hours, outreach facilities, new equipment and improved study space. The six libraries earmarked for closure are those in unsuitable locations and badly in need of repair. The council says the closures will help fund improvements to the remaining library service and contribute towards £42 million of savings the council needs to make this year.

The six libraries will now close with immediate effect from today (13 October). They are Barham Park, Cricklewood, Kensal Rise, Neasden, Preston and Tokyngton. The council is expected to sell the sites for redevelopment.

Opponents to the closure proposals issued a judicial review, but seem now to have no real options left.

Councillor Ann John, Leader of Brent Council said: “Today we have unequivocally won a landmark legal case in the High Court which will enable us to go ahead with our plans to transform our library service, and take it into the 21st century.”

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