Bristol

Plans to close seven Bristol libraries revised

Eastville library
Image caption Eastville Library is still facing closure or relocation under "fresh proposals" to cut the council's library budget

Six of seven libraries in Bristol which were to be closed to save money could remain open, it has been revealed.

Bristol City Council wanted to save £1.1m from its 2016-17 library budget, but following protests Mayor George Ferguson has made "fresh proposals".

Now six libraries could remain open, with reduced staff and opening hours, with just Eastville library facing closure or relocation.

Mr Ferguson said it was "positive" but "no decision has yet been made".

'Keep all open'

The seven libraries threatened with closure are in Clifton, Redland, Sea Mills, Marksbury Road in Bedminster, Westbury, Wick Road in Brislington and Eastville.

Assistant Mayor Daniella Radice said the response from a recent consultation on the future of the city's library service had indicated users wanted to keep all 27 open.

She said the proposals had been discussed with the scrutiny committee ahead of going to cabinet in September.

"There will have to be some cuts to the library service but this will be through a reduction in the number of hours," she said. "But each library will be open for at least 20 hours a week."

But Mr Ferguson said reducing staffing by up to a third instead of closing the libraries would only save the authority about £500,000.

"If we do go down this line, we've got to find £635,00 from elsewhere," he said. "So I've got establish if that's possible because that will cut into some other service."

The full proposals are due to go before cabinet on 1 September.

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