Carnegie Library Association CIO


The Carnegie Library Association is a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO) which aims to restore the Carnegie library as a public library and educational, social, cultural and community resource for Herne Hill and the surrounding area.

We are run by an elected committee of 8 trustees, including representatives of library user groups and of the Friends of Carnegie Library.


Report on CLA AGM, and the latest correspondence with Lambeth

At the second Annual General Meeting of the Association, the initial three trustees, Stephen Carlill, Jeffrey Doorn and Bob Goodrick stood down and were re-elected. Sadly, Rae Stoltenkamp recently resigned as trustee due to family commitments; and Demi De Leon moved out of the area and was deemed to have resigned. The four remaining trustees, Hazel Watson, Frances Alderson, Danny Friedman and Nicholas Edwards were reaffirmed as continuing. A new trustee, Katie Angermeier, was elected, and we are delighted she has joined the board.

A previous website post (below this) included a brief trustees report; the full report given by the Chair at the AGM follows, together with three emails to which it refers:

Price Waterhouse Coopers assessed our business plan and that of Carnegie Community Trust (CCT), and reported to Lambeth. Neither CIO was judged to be ready for asset transfer, though both were said to have strong points. We scored particularly highly on community engagement. Both bidders were invited to present their case to a panel of Lambeth councillors and officers in April 2017; we gave a professional presentation and fielded questions well. Nevertheless, the Council announced in June that they decided to name CCT as ‘preferred bidder’.

We had a second interview with the chair of the panel and sent an appeal to the Cabinet member concerned. The appeal was rejected. The CCT eventually published a sketchy outline plan in January 2018; we understand negotiations with the Council are not going well. We wrote again to the Cabinet member and Lambeth’s Chief Executive on 26 February stating we remain committed to our community-led plans for the library and are ready to work with Lambeth to take asset transfer of the building if other plans fall through. No reply has been received to date*; and we wrote again on 19 March attaching our Business Plan, with an offer to revise and update it; we also included a copy of the presentation made to the panel last April. In the meantime, we are considering making a formal complaint to the Libraries Ombudsman. *Sandra Roebuck responded 21 March p.m.

  1. Letter to Sonia Winifred, 28th February, about the state of the library, and reasserting our bid as an option
  2. Letter to Sonia Winifred, 19th March
  3. Response from Sandra Roebuck, 21st March

CLA AGM, 22nd March 2018

The second Annual General Meeting of Carnegie Library Association will be held at St Saviour's Church, Herne Hill Road on Thursday 22 March, immediately following the AGM of Friends of Carnegie Library, which begins at 6.30pm.

On arrival, CLA members will be given a membership card; this will be your voting card for the evening. Following an update on developments, we will elect the Trustees and hold an open discussion of future actions. The quorum for the AGM is 15, but it is important that as many members as possible attend. A detailed agenda will be provided at the meeting. Refreshments will be available.

A formal notice is here.

A trustees report is here


Patrons: Rt Hon. Lord Lester of Herne Hill and Lady Lester


The Carnegie Library Association is not surprised at the continued failure of the Carnegie Community Trust's (CCT's) bid to take over the Carnegie Library and now the seeming disarray within the CCT. Their proposals were drawn up in secret, had no community support, and to this day the public do not know what their plans are in any detail, in spite of the fact that Lambeth appears to have given £ 100,000 of Council Tax payer's money to support them.

Our Association, whose community-backed bid was rejected by the Council (despite being assessed at a similar level to the CCT), is fully-prepared to step up to the plate and start discussions with Lambeth on our plans to run the Library and associated activities for the benefit of the whole community. In contrast to the CCT, the Association:

  • Includes the provision of the library as one of its constitutional purposes.
  • Has published a fully-costed business plan.
  • Was set up by groups connected with the library.
  • Is a membership organisation with hundreds of members.
  • Has trustees who have been democratically elected by the members.
The Association remains ready to take the transfer of the Carnegie Library but we need the co-operation of the Council to do this and it has so far been withheld. We will be making representations to this end

Jeff Doorn, Chair, Carnegie Library Association

Asset Transfer Announced

Lambeth council has announced the asset transfer of the Carnegie library to the other trust, the CCT, even though we attained a similar level of evaluation in the assessment, which can be viewed here. We intend to appeal this decision.

A copy of our presentation to Lambeth in April is here.

Annual General Meeting

Our first AGM was held on Thursday 16th March, 7pm at St. Saviours Church Hall, Herne Hill Rd. The existing trustees were unanimously re-elected by a well-attended meeting. The trustees are: Demi de Lion, Jeffrey Doorn, Rae Stoltenkamp, Danny Friedman, Nicholas Edwards, Hazel Watson, Frances Alderson, Bob Goodrick, Stephen Carlill.

The annual reports are here

Applications for Planning permission and Listed Building consent

The contractor which runs most of Lambeth's leisure centres, Greenwich Leisure Limited, has applied for consent to turn, in effect, the whole of the building into a gym and destroy most of the Reading and Wildlife Garden.

Friends of Carnegie Library and Herne Hill Society have made detailed objections to the proposals, quoting Chapter and verse of the Lambeth Planning policies contravened by the proposals. The Association's trustees have adopted those objections and added a few more.

Additionally, in an attempt to be as constructive as possible, the trustees have indicated requirements which, if satisfied, might render the presence of a gym tolerable. These are:

  • The ground and first floors would not be affected by the gym or disturbance from it.
  • There would not be any intrusion into the Reading and Wildlife Garden and there would be continued access to the garden for wheelchair users.
  • The gym would make a worthwhile contribution to the running costs of the building and the Association would be compensated for loss of revenue from the basement.
  • Membership of the gym would be restricted to local people and the opening hours limited to times acceptable to the neighbours.
Further details are in a copy of the trustees' letter to Lambeth and its attachment, both of which are available here.

Data Protection Policy

This has been published here.


The Association now has a Twitter address: @CarnegieLibAsso Please follow us and help spread the word and news about our plans.


The Association is delighted to welcome Demi Jade De Leon as our ninth Trustee. Demi, who turns 17 in December, is studying History, Spanish, French and Politics at St Marylebone Sixth Form. A keen user and supporter of the library, she is well placed to be our youth representative and voice.

We now have trustees ranging from 16 to 76 years of age, embracing wide skills and representing a variety of backgrounds reflecting the diversity of our community.


We have prepared a bid for asset transfer of the Carnegie library building. The business plan can be viewed here.

We have run several consultation events for the local community, and distributed surveys to every address in the local area.

Please sign up now to show your support for saving the library for the community!

The Carnegie Library Association has been set up by the Friends, in partnership with other library user groups, in order to apply to Lambeth for control of the library and its grounds through an asset transfer process. The Carnegie Library Association's aim is to reinstate the professionally-run library along with the community activities which were there before plus new ones compatible with the library. Maximum use would be made of the whole building, including uses to raise money to subsidize the cost of providing the library service. It is really important that we are able to demonstrate as much local support as possible, particularly before the deadline for the bid which is 28th October.

Please sign up by sending an email to with your Full Name, Address, Telephone and Email.

The Association is registered as a democratic Charitable Incorporated Organisation with limited liability and membership is free until the first AGM in March 2017, so you are not making any financial commitment.


This undemocratic body purports to be a community organisation and has put in a Business Plan in competition with the one submitted to Lambeth by Carnegie Library Association. They inform us that the Association's proposals and CCT's proposals are similar "in a number of respects" but as CCT have not published their Business Plan it is not possible for the Association to comment.

CCT allege that the Association's Business Plan does not constitute a "united community bid." The Association was formed by Friends of Carnegie Library and eight other community organisations involved with the library. The only disunity appears to be that as the CCT has aims diametrically opposed to those of the nine organisations, we cannot see what role they would have to play in a community-developed bid.

A summary of the known differences between CCT and the Friends / Carnegie Library Association is here.