Exciting News for the CML National Peer Network

Press Release

Hi everyone

Exciting News for CMLs. Please read on and kindly share through all your networks. Please tag the National Lottery – #NationalLottery. Thank you.

Community Managed Libraries National Peer Network awarded £315,400 National Lottery funding

Community Managed Libraries National Peer Network (CMLNPN), a network set up by a group of volunteers in 2017 to provide a service connecting up to five hundred existing and new community managed libraries (CMLs) with each other to help them find advice, resources and support has been awarded £315,400 over three years by The National Lottery Community Fund, the largest funder of community activity in the UK, to develop the service throughout England and Wales.

The grant, made possible thanks to National Lottery players, will be used to employ a full time Network Manager and two part time Regional Co-ordinators to implement a business plan that will create a network of community hubs based around community libraries developed organically with local leadership, to fit local needs and that can deliver transformational and long term change to civic life with local communities as the bedrock.

This development of CMLNPN aligns with the report to Government ‘Levelling up our communities: proposals for a new social covenant’ that calls for ‘a new focus on the modern local library, often community managed, delivering business start-up and digital inclusion for local communities.’

Working alongside and often in partnership with Local Authority Public Libraries, it will support the network to enhance and transform how CMLs work to deliver services across education, health, culture, employment skills support and digital inclusion. This should contribute to creating a large public value resulting in a high social return on investment through co-production with communities and connecting them with each other throughout England and Wales.

David Smith, Chair of CMLNPN, says, ‘We are grateful to The National Lottery Community Fund for recognising the potential in the Network and for CMLs and Hubs to be seen collectively as genuine business partners in the development of the ‘new normal’, delivering substantial economic and social benefits with a stronger and more co-ordinated voice becoming acknowledged by the public and partners in Government, Local Authorities and beyond.’

Emma Ackerman, Funding Strategy Director at The National Lottery Community Fund, said: “Libraries are an asset and a hub for communities. Thanks to National Lottery players, community managed libraries across England and Wales will connect and work together to support local needs, enhance civil life and ensure communities are better able to prosper and thrive. We are delighted to fund this great idea”.

National Lottery players raise over £30 million each week for good causes throughout the UK.


Notes to editors:

  1. Link to CMLNPN research on Community Hubs with case studies
  • There is no single model of a CML. For example, some are recognised as part of their Local Authority’s statutory provision. Others receive their book stock and/or other support from their Local Authority. Others are independent and/or operate as small businesses.

About The National Lottery Community Fund

We are the largest funder of community activity in the UK – we support people and communities to prosper and thrive. We’re proud to award money raised by National Lottery players to communities across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and to work closely with Government to distribute vital grants and funding from key Government programmes and initiatives.

Our funding has a positive impact and makes a difference to people’s lives. We support projects focussed on things that matter, including economic prosperity, employment, young people, mental health, loneliness, and helping the UK reach Net Zero by 2050.

Thanks to the support of National Lottery players, our funding is open to everyone. We’re privileged to be able to work with the smallest of local groups right up to UK-wide charities, enabling people and communities to bring their ambitions to life.

National Lottery players raise over £30 million each week for good causes throughout the UK. Since The National Lottery began in 1994, £43 billion has been raised for good causes. National Lottery funding has been used to support over 635,000 projects – 255 projects per postcode area.


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