A RECRUITMENT campaign for volunteers to take over threatened Silsden Library will begin this month.

Ward councillor Adrian Naylor is hosting a meeting to attract townspeople interested in managing or staffing the facility.

The meeting will be held on at 6.30pm on March 17 at Silsden Methodist Church, across the road from the town hall where the library is housed.

Cllr Naylor organised the meeting after Bradford Council revealed it wanted most of its 32 libraries to become community-managed in a bid to save millions of pounds on its budget.

Keighley library will remain under council control, but Silsden and Wilsden libraries will close within three years if volunteers are not found.

Cllr Naylor hopes the March 17 meeting will be attended by Bradford Council library staff and volunteers, who run community ventures in other villages like Addingham, who can share their experiences.

Cllr Naylor said several people had already contacted either him or the council’s library service about the possibility of volunteering.

He added: “This meeting is the first step in getting a realistic number of volunteers so we know whether we have a project that’s worth pursuing.

“If there are people who have worked in libraries before, then their expertise will be invaluable, but people do not have to have experience.”

Cllr Naylor, part of a community team that runs Addingham Library, was pleased Bradford Council had made a "realistic offer" to would-be volunteers.

He said the council would maintain the building, pay the utilities, such as electricity, and provide books, leaving some items, such as public liability insurance, to the new volunteer team.

Cllr Naylor added: “The big ticket items will be covered by Bradford, so the cost of running the library will be minimal. We don’t have to be concerned that we have to raise a lot of revenue.”

Cllr Naylor said it is not yet known how many volunteers will be needed to run Silsden Library, but about 30 take turns staffing Addingham Library.

Silsden Library, which in 2013 moved into the town hall from its long-time base in nearby Wesley Place, attracts about 12,000 visits each year and loans about 60,000 books.

Anyone wishing to volunteer for the library, but who cannot go to the meeting, should contact Cllr Naylor by e-mailing adrian.naylor@bradford.gov.uk or calling 07803 503643.