Petition to stop multi-million pound library closing
A campaign has been launched to save a multi-million pound library from closure.
Pelsall Councillor Gary Perry says 'it beggars belief' that the library, which was opened five years ago by Prince Edward, is one of nine in Walsall earmarked for closure under revised cuts by the council.
Furious residents in Pelsall have launched a staunch defence of the library, with hundreds signing a petition.
As well as being a fairly new library which was opened at vast expense to the council, Pelsall residents also argue that the library's visitor figures are the highest in the borough apart from the main library in the town centre.
There are also queries over why the library was chosen for the chopping block when the council-owned building it is in, Pelsall Village Centre, will have to remain open anyway as it houses GP surgeries and the pre-school alliance.
Councillor Perry, who has served as a Pelsall councillor for nearly 19 years, set up the petition to keep the library open.
He told the Express & Star: "I set up the petition back in October when the library was first under threat. I did not hand it in in January as we did not know what was happening with the libraries.
"Since the council announced it planned to close Pelsall Library, more than 300 extra people have signed the petition.
"For me the decision beggars belief. Apart from central library, our visitor figures are the highest in Walsall.
"The council owns the building as well which means as it stays open they will still have to pay for the gas, electric etc.
"I understand that libraries needed to be cut but for me closing Pelsall makes no sense."
Council Leader Sean Coughlan said: "It was clear throughout the consultation that there was a risk of closures of many libraries and had there been a proposal from the Pelsall community to put in place a community model, then of course, we would have considered it."