Tourist information centres to merge with library service
Tourist Information Centres in the Wycombe district are to merge with the library service from 1 April – saving taxpayers hundreds of thousands of pounds.
The information centres in High Wycombe, Marlow and Princes Risborough have moved from their own buildings into their respective town’s library in recent years – but until now they retained separate service points with their own dedicated staff.
The merger will provide a more resilient and improved customer experience, with a single team able to check out books and DVDs, answer questions about council services and give advice to visitors about places to visit in the Wycombe district.
Wycombe District Council’s Cabinet member for Community Cllr Julia Adey said: “Residents will benefit from an improved experience, with a single team able to deliver all three services throughout the duration of the libraries’ opening hours.
“The full integration of the services not only saves the taxpayer money but means people will conveniently be able to approach a single member of staff for advice about council services, such as benefits or council tax, find out what events are going on at the weekend and take a book out at the same time.”
Wycombe District Council will pay Buckinghamshire County Council Library Services to run the information service, with the more efficient arrangement saving the district council about £200,000 over the length of the initial five-year agreement.
Margaret Aston, Cabinet Member for Community Engagement at Buckinghamshire County Council, said: “It makes absolute sense to join-up these services, improving the customer experience, saving taxpayers big sums of money and bringing in an additional income to the County Council.
“This is an important milestone in our plans to make Buckinghamshire’s libraries the focal points of their communities – while also ensuring they are more financially sustainable.”