Leicestershire libraries will not close, says council

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Libraries in Leicestershire will not be closed despite financial pressures, the county council has promised.

More than 450 fixed and mobile branches are being shut across the country as local authority cuts take hold.

Despite plans to save almost £250,000 a year from the £7m budget, the council said no libraries would go.

Savings will be made by reducing opening hours when demand is at its lowest and cutting money spent on new books.

The county council is looking to shed about 1,000 posts to help save £82m over the next four years.

Councillor David Sprason, head of adult and community services for Leicestershire, said: "We have no plans to close libraries, in fact we have a commitment not to and in fact we are building a library in Leicester Forest East and we have the capital identified for that."

He added: "The library budget is £7m. We have reduced the book fund, and we have, and we are, reviewing opening hours.

"We have identified savings over four years of £970,000 and we can make them by doing things differently and not having to affect frontline services, as some libraries are open and hardly visited."

The council currently runs 54 permanent and six mobile libraries.

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