Community library needs your help
Hunt is on for new volunteers who want to become trustees
The library has been operational for over 11 years but now its future is threatened.
The charity that runs the library needs local people to step forward and become trustees, otherwise it may no longer exist.
Over the last ten years, the library has gone from strength to strength with a significant increase in visitor numbers and the number of books issued.
The library is run and funded entirely by volunteers, people and businesses who live and work in the village of Little Chalfont.
The volunteers have received the Best Volunteering Group Award from Chiltern District Council, a Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, the MBE for volunteering groups, and the High Sheriff’s Award for services to the community.
Despite its growing success, the library is reaching crisis point.
The age group of the current trustees ranges from 60-70 years old, and some of the key management figures have health issues.
Although the trustees have excellent skills and experience, their health will ultimately determine how long they are able to continue working for the library.
Jim Brooks, Chairman of the library, said: “We have been trying to recruit new trustees for a long time but people are reluctant to put their name forward.
“We have contacted people through the Little Chalfont Community Association, through newsletters and we have even contacted our own volunteers.
“Our trustees cannot continue until they’re 80. We’ve got to face reality. We need new people with good management skills to come forward.”
The management team take on the various roles and responsibilities that are required to run a library “business”.
This includes: health and safety, data protection, financial management, volunteer and rota management, fund raising, event management and more.
If the current management team is not replaced within the next year or so, Little Chalfont Community Library may be forced to close.
“We are looking for persons with broad business skills and an interest in Libraries. Experience of managing people, and ideally volunteers, would be valuable,” said Brooks.
“There is no application process. The starting point is an informal meeting with me to learn more about the role and to decide if it is something the person wishes to take forward,” he added.
The library offers a range of services above and beyond its core service as a public lending library. It has helped more than 100 community organisations and so many other individuals. Now it needs your help. If you are interested in becoming a trustee, please contact Jim Brooks on 01628 664812 or email jimbrooksmbe@gmail. com.