A LIBRARY user was banned for a 'grossly inappropriate' activity.

Figures released to this newspaper show how many people had been banned from libraries in south Cumbria and the reasons why.

Since 2016 a total of five people have banned from libraries in the area.

In 2019, an adult was banned from Ulverston library for 'grossly inappropriate' behaviour.

It was revealed that a member of staff challenged a library user around an inappropriate activity. The person was then 'extremely verbally abusive' towards the member of staff and was banned from the library.

Also in 2019, three adults and one youth were banned from Barrow's library, all because of anti-social behaviour.  

There have been no incidents that resulted in bans recorded in Kendal's library since 2016. 

The figures were released by Cumbria County Council after a freedom of information request.

A spokesman for Cumbria County Council said: “Banning people from libraries is a last resort, that’s why the last time it happened was three years ago.”

The council's banning policy applies to people who engage in 'abusive, threatening and inappropriate behaviour'.

It says: "This policy is not intended to prevent customers from raising legitimate and important concerns, enquiries or requests, or from pursuing them.

"However, Cumbria County Council has a duty to ensure that staff working for the council and service users have a right to undertake their work free from all types of discrimination, abuse, threatening behaviour and harassment.

"The council has a duty to protect the safety and welfare of its staff and service users.

"We therefore shall not tolerate what we consider to be unacceptable behaviour by customers."

Banning orders can last for a month, a year or five years.

A five-year ban would be made for physical assault on a member of staff or customer or · criminal damage to library property requiring replacement of equipment.

During the ban, the library user must not enter the premises except with permission from the community services manager.