Highland Libraries Award For Quality Service Provision
25th January 2011
The Highland Council's Library Service has received acknowledgement for their commitment to providing high quality services at the inaugural Scottish Library Excellence Awards.
With public libraries in Scotland attracting over 30 million visitors per year and academic libraries attracting 12.8 million, the Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) acknowledged the achievements of Highland libraries.
The Highland Library Service was among libraries from across Scotland that received awards at the ceremony presented by Chair of the SLIC board, Christine May which took place at the Scottish Parliament.
The awards were made following the publication of the latest round of Public Library Quality Improvement Matrix (PLQIM) reports, a peer-reviewed self-evaluation tool where services are rated on a six-point scale to identify key strengths and weaknesses. Report results are used to inform the development of an improvement action plan, to ensure that public libraries provide the services that local people require.
Highland Libraries piloted the PLQIM programme and have carried out the self evaluation process since, performing highly in the provision of reading and the ethos and values category. Assessors return next month to look at leadership.
Commenting on the awards, Minister for Culture and External Affairs Fiona Hyslop said: "Scotland's public libraries are a valuable community resource, providing access to knowledge, learning and culture. They can be enjoyed by everyone and provide a diverse range of services - from reading for pleasure to education courses to wi-fi access - which can have a positive impact on the cultural health of the community.
"These awards recognise excellence in Scotland's libraries and acknowledge the hard work of those involved in reaching such a high standard. I would like to offer my congratulations to all of the award winners."
Elaine Fulton, Director of the Scottish Library and Information Council added: "The provision of library services is crucial to ensure that people have the support they need to develop their skills, realise their aspirations and contribute to the economic growth and wellbeing of the country.
"At a time when services are under scrutiny because of the pressures on public finances, it is important that we celebrate the value they add to communities and individuals.
"These awards demonstrate the commitment of library staff to delivering new, high quality, innovative services to ensure that communities have access to the information and advice that they need."
Libraries remain one of the free universal services for communities where the population can visit as individuals or groups to pursue reading for pleasure, learning or hobbies. They also support the business community, individual and community information needs and are inclusive of all age and social groups, nationalities, genders and religious beliefs.
In addition to the visitors who use general library services, libraries also have over 300,000 registered learners following formal courses and an increasing number, now over 10% of the population, use learning centres in libraries.
The event at the Scottish parliament buildings was hosted by Peter Peacock MSP who specially mentioned the ground breaking work with Social Networking and the use of the Internet that Highland Libraries have developed to provide library and information services for outlying communities to enjoy in the comfort of their own home.
To find out what Highland Libraries have to offer go to -
The Highland Council has awarded a 7 year ICT Services contract to WIPRO Holdings UK Ltd. The Council has procured a cost effective, value for money, corporate Information and Communications Technology (ICT) solution that will deliver excellent operational performance and contribute to the continuous improvement of services.
At a Wick stakeholders meeting held on Monday 19 September at Wick High School, representatives from Hub North Scotland and Morrison Construction gave an update on reasons for the delay and outlined a revised programme for the Wick campus delivery. The meeting was chaired by Highland Councillor for Wick Bill Fernie who expressed the Council's disappointment at the delay, and re-stated the Council's priorities to ensure that the flagship facility is completed to the standard expected, and accepting handover only at that point.
Leader of The Highland Council, Margaret Davidson (Independent Councillor) has written to The Rt Hon Michael Fallon MP, Secretary of State for Defence, to express her concerns about the future of Fort George. In her letter she said: "I am deeply concerned at the continued uncertainty around the future of Fort George as an active military barracks.
The Highland Licensing Committee has agreed changes to the activities which are required to have a public entertainment licence so the Highland Council is advising community groups, members of the public, event organisers, charities and businesses to make sure they are aware of the different requirements so not to face the disappointment of having their event or activity cancelled. In particular organisers of public Hogmanay events are being asked to check if their event now falls within the revised definition and, if so, they are being encouraged to submit their applications early.
The Highland Council has informed staff, parents and pupils of ongoing issues with the new Inverness Royal Academy building and the actions being taken to address them. The Council is working with, Hub North Scotland Limited, Morrison Construction and its sub-contractors, to resolve issues which include: problems with the school's gas installations and the impact this is having on some classes; intermittent power and ICT issues; and management of pupil flow during lunch breaks.
Officers from the Environmental Health Service have been contacting food businesses, retailers, suppliers and hoteliers across the Highlands following the Food Standards Scotland ban of cheese made by Errington Cheese Ltd, which has been linked to an E.coli 0157 outbreak in which a three year old child died. The recent cheese ban relates to Dunsyre Blue, Dunsyre Baby, Lanark Blue, Lanark White, Maisies Kebbuck, Cora Linn and Sir Lancelot.
The Highland Council is seeking public opinion on Draft Traffic Regulation Orders for the introduction of Decriminalised Parking Enforcement (DPE) in the Highlands. The Draft Traffic Regulation Orders are available now on the council's website at www.highland.gov.uk/parking www.highland.gov.uk/parking The public have until 30 September 2016 to submit any objections in writing to The Legal Manager, The Highland Council, Glenurquhart Road, Inverness IV3 5NX Decriminalised Parking Enforcement will allow responsibility for enforcing parking and waiting and loading regulations to be transferred from Police Scotland to The Highland Council.
A number of televisions seized by Trading Standards have been sent to a local charity for recycling. The televisions were amongst several items that Trading Standards Officers have seized over recent months.
Schools will be empowered to make more decisions about their pupils' learning, Deputy First Minister John Swinney said today. In a statement to the Scottish Parliament Mr Swinney announced a major review into the way Scotland's schools are run, which places at its heart the presumption that decisions will be devolved to school level.
The introduction of Decriminalised Parking Enforcement (DPE) in the Highlands will allow responsibility for enforcing parking and waiting and loading regulations to be transferred from Police Scotland to The Highland Council. The Council will also receive powers to uplift vehicles.
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