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Friends fear more Darwen library hours cuts
FEARS of more cuts to services at Darwen Library have been expressed by the chairman of a friends group.
John East said he was worried the service could be hit again, despite 25 per cent cuts to opening hours coming into force only a few months ago.
The library is now closed on Tuesdays and opens late on Thursdays as Blackburn with Darwen Council was forced to make massive savings imposed by Government.
Mr East, who is also a town councillor, said further cuts could be very damaging.
He said: “Blackburn with Darwen Council say there will be another round of cuts We don’t want Darwen Library to be affected.
“It is number one on the Darwen Heritage Trail for one thing.
“We need to retain that service and work through the cuts as best we can.”
Mr East said there had been initiatives brought in to minimise the effects of the cuts.
He said: “The friends have bought more than £500 of books as stocks were affected.
“And a partnership with Darwen Academy where people can use the computers on Tuesdays from 10am to 2pm has been quite successful.
“This is most useful to jobseekers as a lot of job applications are done online now.”
Blackburn with Darwen Council’s executive member for leisure said he didn’t know what cuts could be on the horizon.
He said: “Darwen Library is not under threat.
“I think everyone is aware it is likely there will be another round of cuts imposed by the Government.
“At that point all services will be reviewed, but we are not going to make unreasonable cuts.
“The council is committed to libraries. They are an important aspect of what the council provides.”
The group has organised a coffee morning on Saturday to raise awareness of what the library can offer.
Alongside it will be a talk about the work of the group to discover and sell prints of artworks by Darwen artist James Morton, who was killed during the First World War.
Dave and Marie Owen from local history group Darwen Days will also be there to sell copies of their new DVD showing historical footage of the town.
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