A COUNCIL today responded to fears over libraries in Bourne End and Micklefield - saying it is committed to ensuring the services continue.

Yesterday it emerged that the two libraries could be drawn into Buckinghamshire County Council's spending cuts (see link below).

Paula Buck, head of learning and culture, wrote today: "On 11 April you published an article online, ‘Micklefield and Bourne End libraries could be drawn into spending cuts plan’ which gave rise to needless anxiety amongst local residents and staff.

"I welcome this opportunity to clarify the current position with our lottery libraries and allay these fears.

"The three lottery funded libraries in Burnham, Bourne End and Micklefield have not been included in the recent libraries consultation and are therefore not at this time part of the ‘county and community’ model that was agreed at Cabinet earlier this week.

"The ethos of the lottery libraries was and still is, to develop a community led library and community facility.

"Local people were involved in the initial design of the buildings and their role has been to promote the library within their community as much as possible and actively engage in the life of these libraries.

"As a requirement of the funding agreement with the Big Lottery these libraries will be evaluated at the end of 2011.

"We will use this information to review the success of these libraries and will look at how these libraries will fit into the new county and community model in the future.

"I am very keen to encourage the local communities to continue to get involved in these libraries and can reassure them that we are committed to ensure that Micklefield and Bourne End will continue to have a library service in the new facilities that have been developed throughout this project."