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Telford library hours to be cut in £330k savings drive

Telford | News | Published:

Library opening hours in Telford will be cut in a bid to save more than £330,000 to help bridge a £20 million funding gap in council coffers.

Library opening hours in Telford will be cut in a bid to save more than £330,000 to help bridge a £20 million funding gap in council coffers.

The borough's nine libraries open for an average of just over 32 hours a week, which will now be reduced to an average of just over 27 hours a week. Telford & Wrekin Council's cabinet met last night and approved the move and said its priority was to ensure no libraries closed.

The council needed to save 20 per cent of the budget for libraries, totalling £330,392, through reducing opening hours and by locating other services at libraries.

It also means parish councils and other services will be sharing buildings at the four busiest libraries in the borough – Telford, Wellington, Newport and Madeley – which cater for more than 75 per cent of users.

Councillor Arnold England, cabinet member for leisure and wellbeing at Telford & Wrekin Council, said: "This measure goes a long way to saving libraries in the borough.

"A tremendous amount of work has been done behind the scenes and we have worked with other partners to make savings.

"What we have done is a blueprint for future operations to make joint savings with others."

The measures will come into place in August.

Tory leader Councillor Andrew Eade said: "I'm a great supporter of libraries and I look at the great job we did on Wellington Library and it is very impressive."

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