Sunderland City Council to close nine libraries

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Nine libraries are to close in Sunderland as part of plans to save £850,000 from the city council budget.

The authority is to cut the number of libraries from 20 to 11 and replace them with part-time "community hubs" and other measures.

Sites to close are Doxford Park, East Herrington, Easington Lane, Hendon, Fence Houses, Silksworth, Southwick, Monkwearmouth and Washington Green.

Campaigners have vowed to fight the closures.

The council said the libraries earmarked for closure were chosen after a public consultation and a survey that concluded they had declined in use.

But a spokesman for Hands Off Sunderland Libraries said they hoped to reverse the council's decision.

The Labour-controlled authority, which has already shed 1,500 jobs, said it must save £100m from its budget over the next three years.

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