CAMPAIGNERS who have spent months drafting plans on how to save a much-loved library have submitted their proposals to Barnet Council.

Members of Save Friern Barnet Library (SFBL) have been desperately fighting the council’s plans to move the library into the artsdepot, nearly two miles away in North Finchley.

The group was thrown a lifeline in July when the Cabinet announced they could have until October 31 to come up with ways to run their community hub more efficiently.

Last Friday seven campaigners met with council officials to demonstrate not only how Friern Barnet Library (FBL) could be used more effectively but also the huge support it has from community groups including the Royal British Legion and Age UK Barnet.

Their proposals suggest FBL offers volunteer-led projects alongside council-run services such as IT training and support, health clinics as well as inter-school reading groups and story-time clubs for nursery children.

Campaigners hope additional council services, partly staffed by volunteers, would help save the council money.

The campaigners also suggested they form a volunteer community group called Friends of Friern Barnet Library, with the aim of continually developing and strengthening links between the library and the community, working with partner organisations such as Friern Barnet Residents’ Association.

Tamar Andrusier, one of the campaign members, said: “With the fantastic support offered by local people our SFBL Group proposal could really make a difference here in Friern Barnet.

“FBL is at the heart of our community and I just hope that Barnet Council will recognise the real, longlasting benefits we could bring to the community by working together.”

Councillor Robert Rams, cabinet member for customer access and partnerships, said: "Following officers' productive discussions with a number of groups we are expecting to confirm the decision making process for the community bids within the next few days.

"We want to ensure the process is completely fair and transparent to all interested parties and have therefore extended the deadline.

“We expect the process of confirming any viable proposals to take about six weeks. Discussions would then continue with those groups with viable proposals. The final decision will be made by Cabinet Resources Committee.”