CAMPAIGNERS opposing Vale Council proposals to change library services had their worst fears confirmed last night (Monday, March 16) when a council committee backed a cabinet decision to close some libraries.

The decision means if community groups fail to come forward to take on the libraries on a voluntary basis by May 18 then some libraries will close.

Councillors sitting on the lifelong learning scrutiny committee backed plans to find community groups to volunteer to run some library services, reduce opening hours and make cuts to security.

The measures, the authority said, are designed to help it make another £25m worth of savings during the next three years.

Adam Riley, from the Save Rhoose library campaign, told the committee the consultation was misleading as it classed their library as a 'village' library but that Rhoose’s growing population needed to be taken into account.

He said: “This is an insult to the people of Rhoose.”

Rhoose councillor, Phil Clarke, addressing the committee, added: “It’s grossly unfair that Rhoose has been classed as a village library. Rhoose should not be in receipt of decreasing amenities with an increase in population.”

Dinas Powys councillor Chris Franks, also addressing the council committee, said it would be unviable for volunteers to keep Dinas Powys’ library afloat without local authority support.

He said building and maintenance conditions were one concern with the roof leaking.

“Buckets have to be provided during bad weather,” he said.

Committee chairman, Cllr Nic Hodges’ amendment to treat Rhoose and Dinas Powys libraries on their individual merits was defeated.

Changes will now be applied to all libraries – Rhoose, Cowbridge, St Athan, Dinas Powys, Barry, Penarth, Llantwit Major, Sully and Wenvoe.

If community groups are do not come forward by May 18 and/or a business plan is not submitted or viable, the libraries, where it is proposed are volunteer-led, could close.