Wakefield: Outwood Library lovers vow to step up fight

Protesters are campaigning to keep Outwood Library open. Three year old library member Lucy Hill (front) and Karl Grubb (right).
Protesters are campaigning to keep Outwood Library open. Three year old library member Lucy Hill (front) and Karl Grubb (right).
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Campaigners battling to save their local library from the axe have vowed to step up their fight.

As reported in the YEP, local book-lovers in Outwood, Wakefield are campaigning to stop their library becoming one of a number across the district set to be closed by Wakefield Council.

The council needs to save £520,000 and have announced plans to cut off funding to 12 of 25 libraries in the district.

Campaigners have already been collecting signatures online and supporters on Facebook.

And this week, Karl Grubb, leader of the campaign told the YEP: “From September onwards we are going to step up the pace of our campaign. We will have a hard copy petition available to sign which will be available at various locations throughout the area.

“There will be two copies one for adults and one for children, keep your eyes and ears open for details of where and when the petition will be available to sign.”

The campaign group, named Supporters of Outwood Library, have already held talks with Coun David Dagger, cabinet member for Culture, Sport and Libraries in Wakefield, and discussed possible ways to save their library from being closed.

Council bosses are hoping they can pass on the running of the threatened libraries to the public, asking community groups and local organisations to take them on as part of their bid to become a “catalyst council.”.

They say the money-saving plan will result in the “modernisation” of libraries and “create a service fit for the 21st century.”

Mr Grubb added: “Mr Grubb said: “It has to have more than one use if it is to survive and if we can get some money behind us from some bigger organisations, we might even be able to build a much-needed new library eventually.”

The decision as to which 12 libraries will face the chop will be made based on how regularly they are used by the local community.

The group’s announcement comes after Leeds City Council announced that 13 libraries in Leeds would close.