HERTFORDSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL
CULTURE & LIBRARIES PANEL
FRIDAY 18 NOVEMBER 2005 AT 10.00AM
Mobile Service Route Review
Report of Director of Children, Schools & FamiliesAuthor: / Michele Murphy, Mobile Services Manager
Tel No: / 01707 281592
Executive Member: / Robert Ellis
1. Purpose of the report
This report summarises the review of Mobile routes undertaken following the 'Your Mobile Library' programme of consultation and promotion (YML) carried out in 2004 and identifies the timescale for implementation of the changes
2. Summary of review outcomes
The review maintains the current number of Mobile Service opening hours across the county but delivers existing services more effectively. Detailed timetables have been developed using the criteria identified in the Best Value Review of Libraries and confirmed in the YML programme.
3.1Route changes will be introduced in January 2006. The implementation date is timed to coincide with thedelivery of four replacement vehicles by December2005. This will ensure that all Mobile Library vehicles can provide access to the on line catalogue on the new routes. Schedules will be published on Connect prior to implementation. The period from January to March 2006 will be used receive feedback from customers and staff and, if necessary, schedules will be adjusted in April 2006.
.The general criteria used to ensure consistency of service across the county are:-
maintaining the existing one week timetable on urban routes and a two week timetable on rural routes
maintaining a service to settlements that currently have a Mobile service
reviewing stops that have three or fewer existing users to either merge with other nearby stops or provide an alternative Home Library Service delivery
- increasing the time spent at stops to encourage more new customers, enable staff to deliver a better service and to allow for ICT facilities to be introduced in the future
grouping routes more logically to reduce journey times, giving the capacity to introduce stops in new settlements not previously served
There will be a few exceptions to these criteria, which will be determined by local need.
- Prior to the review, 44% of all stops were less than 20 minutes long. In the revised schedules there are no stops less than 20 minutes long
- The majority of stops on the revised schedules (47%) are now 30 – 45 minutes long.
- 21% of stops on the revised schedules are now a full hour
- Visitor figures and issue statistics for the sites where a mobile stops for half or full day are comparatively high. Therefore we have retained these sites with some revisions to opening times
- Duplication of resources has been removed and a more logical schedule of stops has been devised
- Average weekly travelling time across the network has been reduced by 8%
- The Home Library Service visits that had previously been delivered from the rural mobile libraries have been reallocated to the Community Services Mobiles. This means that the rural mobile libraries will no longer have to be shut while the Library Assistant / Driver completes a Home Library Service visit. This allows for greater access by other customers.
- Hours will be increased within the Community Services Mobiles schedules to allow for the Home Library Service visits. The Library Assistant / Drivers of these specialised vehicles will be able to spend longer with HLS customers and therefore add value to the quality of visit to these vulnerable and isolated customers.
- 7 new sites have been incorporated into the new schedules, allowing us to reach communities that we had previously not served.
- Essential time off the road has been provided to allow the vehicle and stock to be maintained to ensure the highest standard of service delivery
- The total average weekly hours open to the public (Rural, Urban and Community Services Mobiles) has been maintained (277.5)
Contained within existing budgets.
Background papers used by the Author when compiling this report
Mobile ServiceRouteReview Report January 2005