Reaction to West Berkshire Council’s proposed cuts

WB Cuts Screenshot

West Berkshire Council has just published the second phase of their budget consultations. The proposed cuts are so severe to a range of services including transport, libraries, sports centres and the arts that several protest groups have formed in response.  However you must respond to the Council’s consultation (scroll to find the service you’re interested in). This is what the Council will consider more than social media or petitions.

West Berkshire SOS (Save Our Services)
This group has been formed to urge the council’s ruling Conservative group to think again.

West Berkshire SOS thanks everyone who attended events this week. The Public Meetings generated good practical solutions and there was great turn out for the Library Meet Up at Newbury Library with West Berkshire Save Our Services, Friends of Hungerford Library, Friends of Lambourn Library, Thatcham, Pangbourne and Mortimer Libraries. BUT – there were also lots of people who couldn’t make it for transport/mobility/health reasons, people who will find it very difficult to use Newbury Library.

Please support the Demonstration Against the Cuts 5.30pm Tues 1 March – before the Full WB Council Meeting at 6.30pm – see agenda here which includes motions to reduce councillors’ allowances and retain business rates to be spent locally.

Contact details:
Twitter: @WestBerksSOS
David Marsh 07775 703582
Steve Masters 07476 810230


Petition to save Lower Way Children’s Centre in Thatcham which offers invaluable support to parents and an outdoor space for children to play

Public Meeting about Hungerford Children’s Centre 7.30pm Thursday 3 March at Hungerford Nursery School, The Croft, Hungerford.
Please support the Children’s Centre which provides support for lonely and vulnerable families in and around Hungerford; support for parents with low self esteem; professional help from speech therapists, job centre staff and housing officers, who regularly attend children centre groups, such as the mother and baby group in Lambourn


If you care about the 8 out of 9 proposed library closures you must respond to the Council’s consultation – preferably by 1 March. This is what the Council will consider more than social media or petitions.

There is also a 38 Degrees Petition to save West Berkshire Libraries

Friends of Hungerford Library
This group is working to keep Hungerford Library open and accessible to all.

Please sign 38 Degrees Petition to save Hungerford Library

Contact Details:

Friends of Lambourn Library

Petition to Save Theale Library
Click here to sign Councillor Alan Macro’s petition

To add your group to this list please comment below or contact

 The Arts

Corn Exchange Newbury & New Greenham Arts

To understand how the cuts will affect this great arts venue in Newbury and how you can help please click here


Lambourn Parish Council has helped set up committees to support the buses under threat to Wantage, Swindon, Hungerford & Newbury from Lambourn

We’re Affected by the Council Cuts

We’re Affected by the Council Cuts is a public facebook group for people to post their photos and statements of how they will be affected by the cuts. If you’re not on facebook you can email and your email will appear as a post in the group.


4 Responses

  1. Wonderful idea from Norman Sinclair-Baines for closing Newbury Library and so leaving the other 8 libraries to remain, allowing a much wider library coverage. I wonder has anyone done a survey on the number of people using just one library against the usage of the 8 destined to close ??

  2. Has anyone thought of closing Newbury Library? This would allow the other 8 to remain open. Users of Newbury library only have to get to Thatcham for their next- nearest library.

    1. Norman – the suggestion was made at the Lambourn meeting I went to earlier this week but Gordron Lundie said that it was a Central Library and so almost impossible so shut. What you say has a lot of logic, though if the services are to be maintained across as wide an area as possible. I think there is still hope for the individual libraries to survive under some form of community operation. Preliminary plans need to be submitted to Hilary Cole at WBC asap. The problem, as I and others have mentioned elsewhere, is that we’ve been allowed so little time for this.
      Brian Quinn

  3. If West Berks would fund the building & heating etc. of Hungerford Library would it be possible to have volunteers to actually run the Library as it is so vital in a Town this size. The Events that are put on especially at half-term & in school holidays are vital for children. For adults that can’t afford computers it is so important that the Library continues.

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