Campaign forces Tory/Ukip Council to reprieve 4 of 10 threatened libraries. Plymouth Labour vows to continue the fight to save the remaining six.
The Tory/Ukip 'Plan for Libraries' threatened 10 of Plymouth's libraries with closure, angering huge numbers of people across the City.
Plymouth Labour has been opposing these closures, and led a community campaign against them. Over 1,500 people signed a petition against the closures, and 228 people attended a Mass Read-in event organised at Peverell Library, with many others supporters attending similar events at Efford and Stoke libraries, and raising their own local petitions.
More campaigners took part in a Read-in Relay outside the Council House, with a continuous chain of different readers rather pointedly reading books at Tory/Ukip Councillors from Dawn until Dusk.
Campaigners force reprieve of Peverell, Estover, Efford and North Prospect Libraries
Put on their back foot by the strength of the campaign, Plymouth's Tory/Ukip Council has announced that four of the 10 libraries under threat will be reprieved.
Labour campaigner Jeremy Goslin said "This is excellent news for the four libraries that have been saved, and shows how the strength of the community voice can cow the powers that be in the Tory Council. However, many supporters will be absolutely gutted that the Council still plans to to rip the books from the hands of children and adults at six other libraries. Supporters should also be concerned that the reprieved Libraries will be designated as 'Tier Two' and not get any new investment. What this campaign shows is how important local libraries are to local communities and our children's education, and the Council shouldn't pass on that important responsibility".
Labour Leader Tudor Evans told the Herald newspaper that plans to close six libraries was a "disaster for literacy levels across the city" and that "They're taking libraries away from some of the more deprived areas of the city".
Luke Pollard, Labour MP for Plymouth Sutton and Devonport, was involved in the campaign from the beginning, and said "There should be no library closures. I am backing the campaigns of local Labour councillors to oppose Tory and UKIP library cuts".
Plymouth Labour will vote against and continue to lead the campaign against the plans to close six of Plymouth's Libraries, and downgrade four others.