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Archives - options for reduced opening hours

  • Period: 20 February 2014 - 23 March 2014
  • Status: Closed
  • Audiences: Everyone
  • Topics: Leisure and culture
  • Type: Public

Budget reductions, part of the overall spending pressures on Shropshire Council, require a major adjustment in staffing and functions at Shropshire Archives. Inevitably this means a reduction in the service’s opening hours. We are seeking people’s views on three options and inviting them to suggest a fourth, one of which will be in place from April 2014.

Budget reductions, part of the overall spending pressures on Shropshire Council, require a major adjustment in staffing and functions at Shropshire Archives. Inevitably this means a reduction in the service’s opening hours.

Our current opening hours are:

  Sunday - Tuesday Closed
  Wednesday 10am - 5pm
  Thursday 10am – 8pm
  Friday 10am – 5pm
  Saturday 10am – 4pm

In recent years the number of actual visitors to Shropshire Archives has gradually declined to an apparent steady figure of approximately 10,000. The current opening on Thursday evening is generally not well used. Saturdays vary in use, but most users do not stay for the whole day. The proposal is to reduce opening hours to 20 hours a week (currently 30) following one of the three options shown below. If options A or B are agreed staffing levels during opening hours will be reduced from 2pm providing a library style service, without access to original documents.

This reduction in opening hours will ensure that the service can continue with other essential behind the scenes cataloguing and conservation work which supports public access to archives. An enquiry service will continue to be maintained from Tuesdays to Fridays. Local History Centres housed in a number of libraries and other venues across the county will also continue to provide access to their local and family history resources.

A final decision on the options following the consultation, will be made by the Portfolio Holder: Business Growth and Commissioning (North) at a decision making session.

Shropshire Archives will be closed from Sunday 30 March to Tuesday 15 April with the agreed new opening hours starting from the week beginning Monday 14 April. This closure period will allow staff to work on a planned move of archives and records to a refurbished store and to complete essential staff training following the restructure.

We are seeking people’s views on three options and inviting them to suggest a fourth.

Take a look at the options and then tell us what you think on the 'how to get involved' page.

Option A

  Sunday - Tuesday Closed
  Wednesday 10am - 4pm
  Thursday 10am – 4pm
  Friday 10am – 4pm
  Saturday  (1 in 2)
Saturday  (2 in 2)
10am – 2pm
Closed

Option B

  Sunday - Tuesday Closed
  Wednesday 10am - 4pm
  Thursday 10am – 6pm
  Friday 10am – 4pm
  Saturday Closed

Please note: option B means limited library service from 2pm Wednesday-Friday

Option C

Service closed one week a month with access to archive material during opening hours.

Option D

Or is there a different option? Please let us know if you think there is an alternative solution, recognising that there is a maximum of 20 opening hours per week.

A total of 550 responses were received.  57.45% were in favour of ‘option A’ with opening times 10am-4pm on a Wednesday to Friday and 10am-2pm on alternate Saturdays.  The majority of comments stressed how important retaining an element of Saturday opening was for those who work during the week.    

You can view the full report on our committee website.

Shropshire Council has been asking people for their views about proposed new opening hours, and the following sequence of opening times – option A in the consultation documents – was decided to be the best option.

  • Sundays to Tuesdays: closed
  • Wednesdays: 10am to 4pm
  • Thursday: 10am to 4pm
  • Fridays: 10am to 4pm
  • Saturdays (first in two): 10am to 2pm
  • Saturdays (second in two): closed

This will mean the opening hours will reduce to an average of 20 hours a week from the current total of 30 hours.

The changes will ensure that the service can continue alongside other essential behind-the-scenes cataloguing and conservation work, which supports public access to archives.

An enquiry service will continue to be maintained from Tuesdays to Fridays.

Complete our online survey to let us know what you think about the proposed options for reduced opening times at Shropshire Archives.

Complete our online survey to let us know what you think about the proposed options for reduced opening times at Shropshire Archives.

Take the survey! »

 

If you have any queries about this consultation, or need it in a different format, contact us using the details on this page.

Data protection

Information collected in our surveys will only be used by us (Shropshire Council) to inform the immediate and future provision of our services. The information you provide will be kept confidential in accordance with our Privacy Policy. It will not be shared outside of Shropshire Council. Information collected via our online surveys (hosted on the Surveymonkey website) will be stored on SurveyMonkey’s servers in the United States of America and SurveyMonkey gives an undertaking never to disclose the survey questions or your responses to others without permission.