Campaigners across the country are fighting to save libraries from serious cuts and, in the worst cases, permanent closures.
Theresa May’s government is considering a dramatic intervention in Lancashire, where local people are fighting against plans to shut no less than 28 libraries.
Libraries Minister Rob Wilson has sent a letter to Lancashire County Council explaining that the Secretary of State for Culture is now “minded” to order an inquiry, since the scale of the closures could leave the area without a “comprehensive and efficient” library service.
Despite the minister’s letter, the Labour leader of the local authority Jennifer Mein told the Lancashire Evening Post that council bosses “still have confidence we’ve actually done the right thing.”
Wilson has also written to Swindon Borough Council to say his government department is investigating a formal complaint about plans to close 10 out of 15 libraries in the area.
Sarah Church, of the campaign group Save Swindon Libraries, said it was “welcome news” and urged council bosses to rethink closures planned for August.