RENOWNED authors have lent their support to a campaign to save a local library.

Teesside writers Richard Milward and Peter Brunton have put their weight behind a bid to save Hemlington Library, in Middlesbrough.

The library faces closure as part of Middlesbrough Council’s plan to save £11m with a series of cuts to community services and facilities across the area.

A campaign started by Labour councillors Janette and Nicky Walker has attracted the support of local residents and politicians and has been signed by more than 2000 people.

Mr Milward, who was born in Middlesbrough and wrote critically acclaimed novels Apples and Ten Storey Love Song about the area, said: “Losing Hemlington Library would be tragic. It's so important for the area, providing one of the cheapest forms of entertainment and escapism, it's a portal to knowledge for the young, old and low on cash, and a meeting point for the community. Lose the library and you lose all of that.”

Children’s author Peter Brunton, who wrote Sally the Oil Rig Seal, added: “I think it is so important to keep the Library open for so many reasons. It is a local meeting place; it lets people practice on computers so they can learn at their own pace; it allows children to borrow books that they or their parents could not afford to buy...We need to develop our children's imagination so we can look forward to a generation of artists, actors and writers. This is why our local libraries are so important.”