Birmingham & Black Country

Library of Birmingham: Queues after opening hours cut

Image copyright @VJOsgood
Image caption Protestors opposed to the cuts stayed inside the building after its scheduled 19:00 closing time

Queues have formed outside the Library of Birmingham after its opening hours were cut.

In February, the city council announced opening hours would be halved as it tries to save nearly £113m from its 2015-16 budget.

The library, which opened less than two years ago, now opens at 11:00 on weekdays, instead of at 08:00.

Protesters opposed to the cuts stayed inside the building after its scheduled 19:00 closing time on Monday.

Anne Gallagher, from the Friends of Birmingham Library, said cutting the opening hours was a "false economy".

"The people it will affect are the vulnerable and the deprived," she said.

A Birmingham City Council spokesperson said: "As has been widely publicised, the council has to make savings in excess of £100m in 2015-16.

"All areas of council business were reviewed and reducing the opening hours for the Library of Birmingham is one of the measures contributing to that overall saving."

Library of Birmingham opening hours:

  • Monday and Tuesday 11:00 - 19:00
  • Wednesday to Saturday 11:00 - 17:00
  • Sunday closed

The Wolfson Centre for Archival Research will be open Tuesday to Saturday 11:00 - 16:00. This will be reviewed at the end of May.

The Library of Birmingham was recently the only attraction outside London named on a list of the UK's 10 most-visited tourist sites last year.

It drew more than 2.4 million visitors, beating London's British Library, which saw about 1.6 million.

Mrs Gallagher said this was "a real coup for the city" that should not be wasted.

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites