CAMPAIGNERS will make one final attempt to save Charmouth Library this week – but hopes are not high.

Dorset County Council has agreed to have a second vote on the future of the service at its meeting today.

A proposal to withdraw core funding to nine of the county’s 34 libraries – including Charmouth – was passed by a single vote at a meeting in July.

Leader of the Liberal Democrat councillors Janet Dover has used council procedures to allow the vote to be retaken at the full council meeting.

The Friends of Charmouth Library will be at County Hall along with other members of the Association of the Friends of Dorset Libraries (Ad Lib) to try and change councillors’ minds.

A spokesman for Dorset County Council said: “On October 13 chief executive David Jenkins received a notice of motion signed by 10 members of the county council.

“The motion asked that the decision made by councillors at their last meeting on July 21 about the Dorset Library Service should be rescinded, and that ‘option D’, set out in reports to that meeting, should instead be adopted.”

Hazel Robinson, chairman of the Charmouth group, will be speaking at the meeting.

She said: “I think the Conservatives have set their faith against it and although they base their arguments on what has turned out to be completely wrong information, I don’t think they will admit that and go back on it.

“We just have to hope that they will listen to what we have to say, have an open mind, and act democratically.”

If the council refuses to change its mind, the nine libraries will be removed from the council network next year.

It means the Friends of Charmouth Library are still going ahead with proposals to set up a community-managed facility.

A Hallowe’en themed fun day was held in support of the library when residents could see the proposals.

“Residents want things to stay as they are of course, but they like our ideas to make more use of the building,” said Mrs Robinson.

Proposed uses for the building include storytelling sessions for pre-school children, and working with the WRVS and Dorset POPP to run Wayfinders, a scheme for befriending isolated people.

Mrs Robinson said: “I think we should undertake these initiatives anyway because we still want to make more use of that building.”

A constitution for the Friends group has now been adopted and Mrs Robinson has been officially elected as chairman.

Robert Hughes is treasurer, Deborah Winstone is secretary, Mandy Harvey is the children’s representative, and Davina Hansford is the volunteer co-ordinator.

The adoption of the constitution means that the Friends can now apply for grants and open a bank account.

Their first deposit will be for £692, which was raised at the event.

Mrs Robinson said: “As always it’s about the money and it would help an awful lot if we had better backing from the county.” Residents are asked to fill in questionnaires about future provision and the deadline has been extended until November 12.

They are available at The Elms, the library, and Charmouth Stores.

The options

• What the council voted for in July – Option B.

Retain 25 libraries, and offer the remaining nine for local community ownership and management (supported by the county council). Reduce the bookfund and frontline, management and support staff.

• What the council has been asked to vote for instead – Option D.

Retain funding to all 34 libraries. Reduce the bookfund, review the approach to buying books, cut the frequency of book deliveries, and reduce management and support staff.