SURPRISE has been expressed that Menston Library is yet to reopen after Bradford Council pulled out its paid staff to save cash.

The library is among 13 across the district that Bradford Council had hoped to turn into ‘community managed’ facilities from April this year to save money.

Before this year, Bradford already had four local libraries run by volunteers, at Addingham, Denholme, Wilsden and Wrose.

Of the 13 further libraries the Council wanted to withdraw staff from in April, seven have remained open thanks to volunteers including the libraries at Burley-in-Wharfedale and Silsden. The library in Baildon is running with a mixture of paid staff and volunteers.

In total, more than 250 volunteers from across the district have signed up to help keep a local library running.

It is understood efforts to reopen a community-run library in Menston is continuing.

Councillor Sarah Ferriby (Lab, Wyke), who oversees libraries, said: “It’s been a difficult journey for the communities and the local libraries affected by these necessary changes.

“However the response from groups and individuals wanting to give their time, hard work and enthusiasm to retain their local library has been fantastic.

“I am delighted that with their support we have been able to retain such a high number of local libraries when many other parts of the country are seeing closures.”

Councillor Rebecca Poulsen, the Conservative opposition group's spokesman for libraries, said she was surprised Menston in particular did not already have a community-run library up and running.

She said: “Menston is a surprise, because they have got quite an active community over there.”

Peter Finlay, chairman of Menston Parish Council said work was ongoing to recruit volunteers and carry out the necessary DBS checks. He further added that a service level agreement with Bradford Council was yet to be signed.

"It has been a slow progression" he said. "So far we have registered 30 volunteers that have been DBS checked but we will need a lot more for it to become viable."

If you would like to volunteer to work at Menston Library email: