North Somerset library suffering with ‘unacceptable’ IT failures

PUBLISHED: 12:00 14 May 2018

Congresbury Library will be taken on by the parish council. Photo by Zak Ghent.

Congresbury Library will be taken on by the parish council. Photo by Zak Ghent.

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A village library in North Somerset has been left without a reliable IT system for a year.

Congresbury LibraryCongresbury Library

Congresbury Library, in Station Road, was one of a number of libraries in the district facing closure or being merged with another service in 2016.

Congresbury Parish Council chose to take it on instead, at a cost of £4,000 a year.

As part of the arrangement, North Somerset Council agreed to provide access to the computers, and look after the IT system through its contract with Agilisys.

However, this system has caused problems for the library’s users over the past year when they have tried to use the printer and its computers.

North Somerset Council is looking to upgrade all of the district’s library IT systems in 2019-20.

Councillor Tom Leimdorfer, addressing the full council meeting on May 8, said: “Congresbury Parish Council and local volunteers have worked hard to deliver high-quality services at Congresbury community library on behalf of North Somerset Council.

“During the past year, the quality of the provision has been undermined by the failure of Agilisys to provide and support a reliable IT system.

“This failure is quite unacceptable.

“Since November, the printer has only worked for about two weeks.

“We have been having to turn people away which is embarrassing to say the last.”

Cllr Leimdorfer asked for the situation to be resolved as a matter of priority.

Cllr David Pasley, executive member responsible for the district council’s transformation programme, admitted problems have been encountered.

He said: “The library has a unique set-up with IT which is old and difficult to support.

“A significant amount of time has been spent by Agilisys at the library rectifying various issues.

“Agilisys is urgently investigating the printer issues and hopes it will be sorted in the near future.

“A long-term fit-for-purpose IT solution is required for all libraries.

“It will be a system which alleviates all the issues and uses a Windows 10 desktop.

“We hope to deliver the project in 2019-20 or sooner if at all possible.”

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