LIBRARIES across Gloucestershire have been handed over to communities.

Following Gloucestershire County Council’s cuts to the service, responsibility for running libraries in Lechlade, Berkeley, Bream, Brockworth and Mitcheldean has been transferred to community groups.

Painswick library was transferred to a community group in July, while Minchinhampton and Newnham libraries are due to be handed over in January.

Each library will receive a yearly grant of £10,000 from GCC and a council officer will provide support three hours a week.

GCC leader Cllr Mark Hawthorne (Con, Moreland) said the new arrangements would give communities the freedom to develop services that meet their specific needs.

“We are not setting these libraries adrift and will continue to offer them ongoing support and advice, but I have every confidence that these organisations are ready to take on the challenge of running their own libraries,” he added.