CAMPAIGNERS will be protesting against planned funding cuts to Barnet libraries today.

Organised by the East Finchley Library Users’ Group (EFLUG), Barnet Unison and Barnet Alliance for Public Services, protests will be held at East Finchley and East Barnet libraries between 9.30am and 5pm.

Stalls will be set up for the public to sign a ‘Save Our Libraries’ petition, which has already been signed by more than 1000 residents, before it is presented to the council.

Barnet Council's Cabinet is set to decide the fate of the borough's libraries at a meeting to be held on March 29.

Polly Napper, EFLUG’s event organiser, said: “Libraries are a vital resource for our communities they are a resource for knowledge, for literacy, for communicating with the wider world and for enjoyment.

“I hope that Barnet will save money instead by cutting layers of management, buying books more economically, sharing services between boroughs and co-locating council offices within branch library buildings.

“The council have already cut £1.6 million from the Libraries and Museums budget. I very much hope that they will do everything possible to avoid branch closures because losing a branch library is a devastating blow for any community.”

Academics and writers, including poet, Fleur Adcock, OBE, and oral historian, Peter Hart will be attending the event between 2pm to 4pm to read aloud passages of their work.

Mr Hart said: “Libraries are a crucial part of our cultural heritage. Free and easy access to that heritage is important and the cuts will gradually undermine the system, whether by outright closures, reductions in hours of other pernicious cuts in library budgets."

People will get the opportunity to write a line of a communal poem, entitled Why I Love My Library, while youngers will be invited to design a Love Your Library poster.