Laura Sharman 10 April 2017

Study reveals drop in frequency of library use

Study reveals drop in frequency of library use image

Although one in two people in the UK continue to use their local library, there has been a significant drop in how often people visit them, new research has revealed.

The five-year study, published by the Carnegie UK Trust, found that young people (15-24 years) are the most likely age group to use a library, with people over 55 the least likely.

The Shining a Light report also found the majority of people say that providing better information on the services that libraries offer would encourage more use.

The Carnegie UK Trust has now published a five-point plan for libraries, calling for more personalised services, making better use of data to understand what people want and innovation in training for library staff.

Martyn Evans, chief executive of Carnegie UK Trust, said: ‘The reasons why some libraries succeed are varied but include: new buildings, co-location with other services, additional services, good book stock availability, accessibility, open spaces and much more.

‘The key lesson is that libraries must be more confident, have better evidence and replicate best practice. This will create the confidence of funders to invest staff and money to ensure libraries prosper. Everything we have learned is that such investment can reap enormous positive rewards.’

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