The leader of Harrow Council's Conservative group says she is “uneasy” with the council cabinet’s decision to outsource library and leisure services.

The comments come after the authority's cabinet last week made the decision for library services to be run by John Laing Integrated Services Ltd in partnership with neighbouring borough of Ealing.

Councillors also agreed to award the contract for delivery of leisure management services to Sports & Leisure Management Ltd in partnership with the boroughs of Brent and Ealing.

Tory group leader Councillor Susan Hall said: “We’re uneasy that this decision has been made. We have been asking questions about the specifics of the library and leisure contracts for months now, and we are uncomfortable with the answers we have received.

“These concerns involve everything from the investment costs to the flexibility the council has to adjust the terms of the contracts if desired.

“We're also very worried at the length of these contracts; at five and ten years respectively, they will essentially bind future administrations.

“We would also remind the Independent Labour administration that, though they have left the Labour Group, they were still elected on and have said they will uphold a manifesto which promised no library privatisation – yet this is essentially what they've just done.”

At the meeting last week council leader Thaya Idaikkadar said Harrow had to be pragmatic with its decisions and people will be more concerned about keeping these key services than who is running them.