Rayleigh and Wickford MP, Mark Francois has secured a meeting on Friday 7th June 2019 with County Councillor Susan Barker, the Cabinet Member at Essex County Council responsible for the ongoing review of Library provision. Mark will be lobbying hard to keep open the Libraries at both Hockley and Hullbridge in his constituency, which are currently under threat from the County Council’s proposals.
Mark called for the meeting some months ago, when he responded to ECC’s consultation about the proposed library closures across parts of the county and where he argued very strongly that both Hockley and Hullbridge Libraries should continue to be kept open for public and community use.
Mark will be accompanied to the meeting by County Councillor Carole Weston, who covers the Rochford West Division (which includes both Hockley and Hullbridge within its boundaries). He will also be supported at the meeting by Carla Vaughan and Megan Hemmings who have led the campaign to keep Hockley Library open and also by Councillor Angelina Marriott, the Chairman of Hullbridge Parish Council and Tony Pinnock, who is the Secretary of the Friends of Hullbridge Library.
Commenting on the forthcoming meeting, Mark Francois MP said:
“I have been calling for this meeting for some time and I am grateful for County Councillor Susan Barker for giving us an opportunity to travel to County Hall and put the case to save these two libraries to her in person. As the local MP, I have had very many representations from constituents, who have pointed out to me the fundamental importance of these facilities, not just as a place to read and study or borrow books and DVDs but also as vital hubs within the communities themselves, that host a whole range of organisations, from Mums and Toddlers Groups through to the U3A. I very much hope that our delegation will be able to persuade County Councillor Barker to keep both these libraries open and indeed hopefully, to look again at the entire programme of closures across the County, which I believe are not a very good idea at all.”