|Hertfordshire’s ‘Inspiring Libraries’ strategy has delivered significant changes and improvements to the library service over the last three years, including the provision of a new ‘state of the art’ library on Berkhamsted High Street.In November 2017, the County Council’s Cabinet agreed ambitions and priorities for the next phase of ‘Inspiring Libraries’ from 2018-2021, including:Improving library buildings, extending access to library services, developing technology, maintaining service delivery. ‘Inspiring Libraries’ always envisaged that it would be would be necessary for the service to consider ‘the best operating models to deliver the strategy within a reduced budget’, and since November 2017, work has been underway to explore the case for adopting an alternative delivery model for Hertfordshire Libraries. This included a public consultation exercise, which ran from 8 January to 18 February 2018, attracting more than 2000 responses. The results of this exploratory work, including feedback from the public consultation, will be presented to the Education, Libraries and Localism Cabinet Panel on 17 April 2018.The motivation for exploring an alternative delivery model is so that we can continue to develop and improve our services despite the financial challenges we are facing. Whilst we have additional savings to make, I would prefer that we consider all available options, rather than making any ill-considered reduction in service. Whatever we decide to do, I am determined that we will not be selling off or privatising libraries – the County Council has a statutory responsibility to provide library services, so any independent library service will still be accountable to the council and therefore to local residents. There is a report being presented to the Education, Localism and Libraries Cabinet Panel on Tuesday 17th April 2018 in relation to Hertfordshire Libraries. Please take a looks at the agenda and report.