Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Volunteers step in to run Isle of Wight libraries

Volunteers are taking over the running of five libraries on the Isle of Wight after they were threatened with closure.

Conservative-led Isle of Wight Council had planned to shut nine of its 11 libraries from the end of March to save £33m over four years.

The libraries in Bembridge, Brighstone, East Cowes, Niton and Shanklin will be community-run from October.

The remaining six libraries on the island will be run by the council.

It is expected the new arrangements will save the authority about £500,000 a year.

Ian Anderson, of Isle of Wight Council, said: "It would not have been possible were it not for the tremendous enthusiasm and dedication displayed by communities across the island."

The volunteer-run libraries in buildings leased by the council will have free access to the council's library book stock and will be installed with broadband.

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