Essex

David Baddiel and Michael Rosen back Essex libraries campaign

David Baddiel Image copyright Tessa Hallmann
Image caption David Baddiel writes children's books as well as performing comedy

A comedian, former children's laureate and an author have backed a campaign to save libraries threatened with closure.

Conservative-run Essex County Council is reviewing how many of its 74 libraries it wants to keep or hand over to be run by community groups.

David Baddiel, Michael Rosen and AL Kennedy have given their support to the Save Our Libraries Essex (SOLE) by posing for pictures with signs.

Little Britain star David Walliams has already backed the campaign.

The council is considering closing 25 libraries.

Image copyright Tessa Hallmann
Image caption Poet Michael Rosen is known for his children's stories

Rosen is known for popular works including We're Going on a Bear Hunt, while Baddiel has written several children's books as well as football anthem Three Lions, and Kennedy has written nine novels - winning multiple awards.

Essex-born singer Billy Bragg has also tweeted his support on social media, as well as children's author Dame Jacqueline Wilson.

Essex photographer Tessa Hallmann took pictures of the celebrities holding placards supporting the cause.

She said: "When I heard about the consultation, I was horrified at the possibility of losing my local library, my childhood library.

"I have visited it so often, attended talks, open days, community days, local history days, so many things, but as I had not taken out a book in a certain time frame, under the rules of the consultation my use of the library did not count."

Image copyright Tessa Hallmann
Image caption Author and performer AL Kennedy lives in north Essex

The council said no decision had been made on library closures, with a consultation having received 21,000 responses which needed to be considered before plans were finalised.

Earlier this year, about 400 children and adults carried placards and musical instruments as they marched in Manningtree as part of a campaign to save the libraries.

A Carnival for Libraries will be held on Saturday in Chelmsford which will involve a march on County Hall.

Image copyright David Walliams/Twitter
Image caption David Walliams found fame on television shows including Little Britain

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