Fundraising campaign to block Surrey libraries plan

Stephen Fry
Image caption Stephen Fry urged his followers on Twitter to donate the price of a book to SLAM's cause

An action group opposed to Surrey County Council's plans to replace paid staff with volunteers at some libraries is seeking to raise £18,000.

The Surrey Libraries Action Movement (SLAM) needs to finance a judicial review after it issued legal proceedings in the High Court.

The Legal Services Commission has asked Surrey residents to contribute, saying the case is in the public interest.

SLAM is appealing for donations from individuals and organisations.

The review is due to be heard at the High Court in London, on 19 and 20 March.

Twitter support

The campaign has so far raised £5,000 and SLAM has appealed to the local community to help reach the £18,000 target within the remaining two weeks.

It will be setting up stalls in towns including Weybridge, Woking, Guilford and Epsom, on 10 March.

The Conservative-run council agreed in September to devolve responsibilities to groups of volunteers at 10 libraries - Bagshot, Bramley, Byfleet, Ewell Court, Lingfield, New Haw, Stoneleigh, Tattenhams, Virginia Water and Warlingham.

The High Court ruled plans to launch Byfleet library as a community library could go ahead.

SLAM is supported by the actor and broadcaster Stephen Fry, who urged his 3.9m Twitter followers to help the group "fight the good fight" against the proposals.

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