A WELL-USED library in West Moors could be closed in a bid to save Dorset County Council cash.

The Station Road library is one of 20 earmarked for closure because the council needs to trim more than £650,000 from last year’s budget of £5,140,000 for its 34 libraries.

Following an extraordinary meeting, called by West Moors Parish Council, a working party has now been formed to investigate its options.

Council clerk Judi Weedon said: “We have three schools in the village and we have a large retired population, and so the library is very well-used. To lose our library would be a great loss to West Moors.”

As a result of a bequest from Daphne Harrison to the parish council, the library was extended in 2003 and now hosts an IT suite of six computers, with free internet access.

In a report to go before Dorset |County Council cabinet bosses on Wednesday, February 2, the council’s library service manager, Tracy Long, warns that the council must re-prioritise.

She said: “The county council must now focus on the library service it can deliver going forward with a budget which is 70 per cent of the budget four years ago.

“It is proposed that funding will cease for up to 20 communities where there is currently a library.”

Ms Long’s report contains better news for libraries in small towns including Verwood and Wimborne, which have been listed for continued supply of books and DVDs, and for providing activities and events.

County Hall had planned to trim £334,000 from its annual budget, saving £143,000 from a reduced stock of books, £164,000 from ‘reconfiguration’ and £30,000 from improved supply management.

But now the full extent of Government funding cuts is known, library chiefs |are warning of the need to save ‘in excess’ of £650,000 for the coming financial year and warning more savings will be needed in 2012/13 and 2013/14.

A spokesman for West Moors Parish Council said: “We are going to do everything we possibly can in our power to keep the library going.”