A PROTEST against cuts to library services will be held this weekend.

Campaigners say they fear they could lose their vital library, in St John's.

The protest group has held previous events and organised a petition after Worcestershire County Council said it intended to slash £1 million from its library budget by the end of the financial year in 2021.

The plan was blamed on cuts to local government funding but this was later changed to £800,000, with the authority saying this was done after speaking with the public.

The group is calling June 6, ‘Library D-Day’, as this is when the authority’s libraries consultation goes to the county council cabinet for consideration.

Ahead of this, the group’s latest protest is to be held tomorrow, which is going to include a march through St John’s beginning at 11am, and returning to St John’s Library, Glebe Close, by 11.45am for speeches.

The protest has been organised by library users and Socialist Party members Sean McCauley and Mark Davies.

Mr Davies said: “The options our councillors put forward in the sham public consultation document did not allow us to choose what we really want i.e. no to all reductions in services.

“We could only choose between how best to cut services not improve them. Our own real consultation, which has involved two public meetings, a protest outside the library itself, many campaign stalls with petitions - over 3,000 signatures have been collected - and door-to-door leafleting as well as door knocking has shown us that there is widespread opposition to any attempts to cut any services from St John’s library.”

Mr McCauley added: “St John’s Library is home to dozens of local groups such as toddler reading and music groups. They are a source of contact for pensioners some of whom can be at risk of isolation. There is even a sensory room and garden for children with special educational needs. None of these resources are resources we can afford to lose.”

Councillor Simon Geraghty, leader of the county council, has previously said the council realised the budget cut was “too high” after speaking with the public, the consultation was “not about closing libraries” and was instead about preparing the service for the future.

READ MORE: Campaigners say St John's library is 'vital' to local community