Authors back protest over library closures


The Times UK has a short Report on library closures in the UK, and the growing protests against these moves.

Nearly 80 per cent of the nation\'s local authorities have cut library
services to save money, rather than because they were being under-used.
Yet the expenditure (the public library service costs 26p per person per
week, the price of a first-class stamp) was minuscule against the benefits,
she said.

The novelist Margaret Drabble was among celebrities who denounced
yesterday the closure of local libraries around the country as nothing less
than philistine.

They staged a vigorous protest on the pavements outside the House of
Commons. Although blustery wet weather took its toll on cardboard
placards imploring local authorities and the Government to \"Save Our
Libraries\", nothing could dampen passions.

Ms Drabble said the idea of cutting or closing library services was
\"shocking\" and that local authorities were \"being negligent in their duty to
their community\". Libraries, she insisted, were vital to community life -
everyone from children to the elderly - and needed to be in walking