Axe falls on Dorset County Council's services

Image caption, The council said job losses would be "inevitable" after the government's Spending Review

Dorset County Council has announced which of its front-line services will face cuts in a bid to save nearly £50m.

At a meeting in Dorchester, councillors announced plans to cut £7m from the social services budget.

The plans include losing more than £1m from highways while youth services will also be hit.

Two weeks ago, when Chancellor George Osborne announced the government's Spending Review cuts, the council said job losses would be "inevitable".

The Cabinet will now consult on the plans.

The county council must save £48.6m - or 17% of its budget - over the next three years.

'Really painful cuts'

Before Wednesday's meeting, the council had previously said it had already identified potential savings of £22.5m over three years, leaving a funding gap of £26.1m.

The £22.5m was to be found from axing senior management posts, cuts to redundancy payments, charging for staff parking, reducing the number of council buildings and reviewing sick pay, it said.

On Wednesday, social services, highways and youth services were identified as the first front-line areas for £9m of cuts towards the remaining £26.1m, but it is not yet clear how the services will be affected.

Councillors also announced 13% of the libraries budget would be cut, there would be no more contributing to CCTV in Weymouth and there would be an end to the village halls budget.

When asked if more painful cuts would come later, leader of the council, councillor Angus Campbell, told BBC News: "Clearly one always looks at some of the really painful cuts last, and that would be logical.

"But it's not just cuts, it's the way you work, doing things differently."

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