VILLAGERS in West Moors will be told today if their library is to stay open for good.

A final decision on the future of Dorset’s libraries will be made at the full council meeting of Dorset County Council today as the authority seeks to save £800,000.

Two options will be considered: Option B – to retain 24 libraries and work towards nine community libraries and option D – to retain all 34 libraries in the county. Option B would see the smaller libraries’ funding removed next March.

At the council’s Cabinet meeting on July 6, West Moors was moved on to the list of libraries to be retained.

West Moors parish councillor David Butt said: “The community will be keeping everything crossed on Thursday. Although I have heard we are on a reprieve list and hopefully it will stay open, you never know.

“It would be a great shame if the library were to close as lots of people use it.”

Cllr Pete Holden added: “Let’s get over this last hurdle and hopefully we can relax a bit more if our library is saved.”

More than 2,000 people have signed a petition urging councillors to remove the library, in Station Road, from the list of ten community libraries which could be shut next year.

They argue a large bequest left by former resident Daphne Harrison in 1994 means the council would have to repay around £64,000, as laid out in a 15-year agreement.

And they said if the library was to close in 2012, repayment of the loan would outweigh any savings likely to be made by the county council for at least two years.

Ad Lib (the Association of Friends of Dorset Libraries) is calling on councillors to back option D, which involves making cuts across the service in order to keep all 34 libraries open.

The campaign is being backed by cabinet minister and west Dorset MP Oliver Letwin and Oscar-winning Julian Fellowes, who lives in West Stafford, near Dorchester.