Goodmayes Library closure plan will ‘deprive pupils’ – headteacher

CHILDREN’S education will suffer if plans to close Goodmayes Library are approved, a primary headteacher is warning.

Battling against the threatened closure, Elizabeth Bradshaw, head of Mayespark Primary, Goodmayes Lane, Goodmayes, says the closure will leave hundreds of youngsters worse off.

A petition has been signed by parents and teachers against the plan to shut the library – also in Goodmayes Lane and a short walk for the children.

The majority of the school’s 712 pupils regularly go to the library on outings.

But with the axe hovering over the library in a bid to save cash in the council’s belt-tightening 2011/12 budget, the trips could become a thing of the past.

Mrs Bradshaw said: “It would be too far to walk to any other library. It would take a lot more time out of class.”

She added: “We have a small library but with the cost of buying books, Goodmayes means the children have access to good quality books and it is a major support for us.

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“I understand it’s a time of austerity, but the library makes a significant contribution to our children’s education.

“Going to a library at a young age means they are more likely to do so independently when they are older.”

The closure plan, which is now out to consultation ahead of a vote by all 63 Redbridge councillors in March, will save �191,000 from 2013/14.

Six members of staff will be made redundant and a smaller library in High Road, Seven Kings, will cater for Goodmayes residents.

Hitting out at the merger plans, member of Take Action for Seven Kings Chris Connelly, said: “The suggestion that users can use the new Seven Kings library is laughable and offensive given the challenges this temporary shop front site presents meeting its own demand.”

Seven Kings ward Labour Cllr Ali Hai said: “Goodmayes is one of the most deprived areas in Redbridge. It has no community facility other than this library.”