Petition calls for 'ringfencing' of government library funding

Petition calls for 'ringfencing' of government library funding

A petition calling to protect libraries by "ringfencing government funding" has gained more than 5,000 signatures.

Launched by Frances Belbin, the petition puts responsibility for library closures at the government's door and describes the solution of volunteer-run library services as "unsustainable long-term".

While highlighting local libraries are "a vital resource for the promotion of reading, literature and culture", and its benefits to those who don't readily have online access, the petition laments government cuts now mean councils are "unable to keep staffed library services open when faced with the competing demands".

It urges: "The government must ringfence funding to ensure councils can fulfil their statutory duty to keep libraries services available to the general public."

Currently at 5,561 signatures, it needs to hit the 10,000 mark to force the government to respond and 100,000 to have the issue considered for debate in Parliament.