Volunteers giving up their time to help local libraries are being applauded by county council chiefs.

Figures have revealed that more than 1,000 people lend a hand at libraries across Staffordshire.

Cllr Victoria Wilson, Staffordshire County Council’s cabinet member for communities and culture, said:

Cllr Victoria Wilson

“It’s five years since the first of Staffordshire’s libraries became community managed and since then they have evolved to meet local demand in their  communities, as well as delivering the core library service.

“While the pandemic affected the way libraries operate, it didn’t affect volunteers’ sense of community and there are stories of people helping others during the lockdowns with everything from book deliveries to organising emergency food supplies.

“So many people have done a fantastic job without fanfare at the heart of their communities and I’m proud to be associated with them.”

Cllr Victoria Wilson, Staffordshire County Council

Among the libraries managed by volunteers is Shenstone Community Library.

The arrangement sees the management and day-to-day running of the library taken over by members of the community while the authority remains responsible for agreed utility and maintenance costs.

“This move towards putting smaller libraries in the hands of the communities to take decisions at a local level has been a great success and none of this would happen without the commitment of the volunteers.

“If anyone else would like to contribute this way – even if just for two hours a week – at any of our libraries they can email volunteerinyourlibrary@staffordshire.gov.uk .”

Cllr Victoria Wilson, Staffordshire County Council

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