A PRIORSWOOD vicar has rallied over 550 people against the closure of Priorswood Library via social networking site Facebook.

The Rev Iain McFarlane, vicar of St Peter’s Church, Taunton, set up Facebook group ‘Save Priorswood Library’ to draw attention to the campaign against cuts to the library’s funding, which would see it become one of 19 libraries to close across Somerset.

The group focuses particularly on a ‘community read-in’, which will see people from the Priorswood area show their support via a mass reading session on Friday, February 4, from 10am to 11am.

The event will celebrate the library’s importance and offer residents the opportunity to submit reasons for it to remain open.

Mr McFarlane started the group, which currently boasts 556 members, after years of using Facebook to communicate with his congregation.

He said: “Despite publicity, many of the sites’ members were unaware of the planned closure and in sharing their shock have expressed how widely their families use the library’s breadth of facilities.

“It’s a place where people of all ages go, not just for books, but to meet people, access the internet and work on job applications.

“If anything, local demand for the library will increase as people use their internet and email services as more information and services go online.

“This is a damaging cut that strikes at the heart of a community identified by Taunton Deane Council as a Priority Area.

“Instead of receiving priority, residents will receive the image of a boarded up, disused white elephant memorial of the 2011 cuts.”