Protest heads to the council over libraries
Campaigners will march on County Hall next month in a bid to save 32 libraries from closure.
Around 100 protestors will demonstrate outside the offices of Lincolnshire County Council on Friday, September 13.
And there are early plans for a second march through Lincoln city centre on Saturday, September 21.
It comes after the coalition-led authority announced, in June, proposals to relinquish control of 32 of its 47 library services across Lincolnshire.
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It is part of plans to cut £2million from its overall budget.
Around 170 jobs will be lost if the proposals are passed following a three-month public consultation.
It is believed around 20,000 people have signed library petitions across the county.
They have been backed by some high-profile names such as Hollywood actress Minnie Driver and historian Mary Beard.
Speaking to the Echo, Mrs Beard said: "I had to back the libraries campaign in Lincolnshire – it is right up my street.
"Libraries are vitally important to people of all ages.
"They are vital for children's education and them getting access to books and technology.
"They provide learning resources and pleasure.
"I want to weep when I hear of libraries closing because that is one of the ways knowledge is spread and aspirations raised for people aged two, or 92."
Meanwhile, around 40 residents attended a public meeting in Birchwood, Lincoln, on Monday evening.
Birchwood Library is under threat of closure despite being one of the best used in Lincolnshire.
The meeting was chaired by Birchwood county councillor Rosie Kirk and primary school teacher Mary Gillen.
Attendees overwhelmingly voted in favour of keeping the local library as it is.
During the meeting, resident Judy Renshaw said: "It is not just Lincoln Birchwood that could see its library go – there are several on the fringes of Lincoln city centre.
"This will mean that everyone will have to go to Lincoln Central Library.
"There are already traffic problems in the city and a lack of parking spaces so this simply will not work.
"It also discriminates against the disabled because they will have to somehow get themselves from the bus station to the library carrying bags and several books.
"The whole thing is flawed."
Leader of Lincolnshire County Council Martin Hill signed a petition against his own authority's plans to pull funding from the library service this week.
Councillor Hill was pictured by campaigners as he signed the document while attending the Deepings Raft Race event in the south of the county on Sunday.
The consultation period will end on September 30.
The cabinet members at Lincolnshire County Council will make the final decision on the matter in December.