Council spending on books in Essex libraries has decreased by more than 30 per cent in ten years.

Campaigners against Essex County Council’s proposals to close a number of libraries, including Wickham Bishops and Southminster, asked the council for figures on the funding of books.

The figures show that from 2009 to 2010, just over £2.1million was spent on books, e-books and audio books for libraries.

Between 2017 and 2018 the county council spent just over £1.6million.

Since 2009 the council has also reduced spending on non-fiction, particularly expensive academic books, as these have been replaced with online content.

Campaigners have called on the county council to pause the consultation and look at other options, which include no closures at all.

No one at Essex County Council was available for comment.