Hope for libraries

Hopes rose this week of community deals to save some Sheffield branch libraries.

The council said there had been a “marked increase” in numbers of groups coming forward wanting to run them.

Talks are being held with representatives in areas such as Walkley, Broomhill, Stannington, Frecheville and Ecclesfield, and the council has said it is willing to help with training and support, as opposed to direct cash.

Cabinet member Coun Mazher Iqbal, said: “It is great to see people are taking an interest and it really heartens me to see that people want to keep their libraries open and are willing to step up and do what it takes to help make this a reality.

“I want to reassure people that we are striving to ensure there is a comprehensive and efficient library service for the whole city based around Central Library and 11 other main libraries.”

Sixteen libraries are facing closure to save £1.668m over two years.