Hadleigh gets pop-up counter for Babergh council services
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A Suffolk council criticised for not having provision for people to access services without heading into Ipswich has confirmed a second pop-up customer service site in Hadleigh.
Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Councils moved to Endeavour House in Ipswich last year, but kept staffed service points in Sudbury and Stowmarket for members of the public.
In April, Babergh’s cabinet said a full-time staffed point would not be provided in Hadleigh, but following the success of weekly pop-up style provision in Shotley, a second pop-up has been arranged for Hadleigh.
Hadleigh Library will host the pop-up on Thursdays from 1.30pm to 5pm, with staff on hand to help locals with queries.
Councillor Derek Davis, Babergh District Council cabinet member for organisational delivery, said: “Improving customer service access remains a top priority for us and it’s great we’ve been able to continue the service which has worked so well in Shotley with a second pop-up customer access point in Hadleigh.
“We understand that not everyone is fully comfortable using our services online and this work allows our residents to talk to a human face to face.
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“This project has enabled us to build on an excellent working relationship with Suffolk Libraries and will enable us to have a clearer picture of what our residents need.”
The council also plans to permanently have self-service iPads in the library in the near future, where people will be able to go onto the council’s website.
Labour councillor Luke Cresswell had previously put forward a motion for a fully-staffed permanent customer service desk in Hadleigh, and while he admitted it was disappointing he acknowledged the work Mr Davis had put into securing a pop-up.
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Councillor Kathryn Grandon, ward member for Hadleigh South said: “As one of Hadleigh’s district councillors I’ve been calling for a Hadleigh access point for residents and I’m pleased that this project will fulfil that ambition.
“This initiative means those living in and around Hadleigh can have local and easy access to Babergh’s customer services, both on and offline even if they don’t own a computer.”