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'Save Cornwall's Libraries'

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4:24pm 4th September 2014


A Falmouth schoolboy hands in a five and a half thousand signature petition over the future of Cornwall's libraries.

Officials want to hive them off as part of two hundred million pounds worth of cuts.

That would mean volunteers or town councils taking over.

Ten year old Leon Remphry's so angry about it he decided to make a stand and rally support: "I really, really love reading. I've been a member of a library since I was four. I've never heard of a library closing before. I've just never heard of a library closing before. It's my feed of new books.

"It's been proven that reading makes you a lot cleverer. It's not just about reading books. Some people I've met who've been made redundant and need somewhere to go that isn't home, some people go there to shelter from bad weather, there's a whole heap of reasons.

"Pretty much everybody at my school and everybody I meet has been really willing to sign. I didn't think it would get very far to be honest. Now it's gone so far it's surprising everyone, even mum and dad. Everybody recognises me now and when I'm out on the Moor collecting signatures people are coming up to me and asking to sign."

On Thursday, Leon went to County Hall in Truro to hand in the petition.

Tim Andrews is on St Ives Town Council and says it is not an ideal situation, but it is a reality they will have to deal with: "There's the cost that has to be born.

"We, as a town council, would need to consult with local people to see how much they valued the service and whether they'd be prepared to pay more through their council tax in order to keep the service.

"I'm concerned about it. I mean they're looking at saving 44% percent of the total library budget and that's going to be a big threat; as a community we have to rally round and work out what's going to be the best way forward."

4:24pm 4th September 2014

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