LIBRARIES are to be hit across six authorities, resulting in savings totalling £1.47 million.

Aberdeen is expected to lose four community libraries – saving £195,000.

Edinburgh’s savings plan of more than £300,000 is up in the air as councillors this week dropped plans to cut library opening hours and are to reconsider their long-term plans for staffless libraries.

Proposals to close libraries on Saturday afternoons which would have meant job losses appear to have been dropped.

West Lothian Council plans to reduce hours at libraries from April in a savings package of £130,000. The changes to opening hours will save the council £50,000 by reducing staffing.

A shake-up of Angus Alive, which runs the region’s libraries, is expected to make a £458,000 saving. It is said to have led to the departure of senior figures already.

Inverclyde’s £246,000 package of planned savings for next year includes cutting library headquarters support, and removing evening opening of all branch libraries.

Sean McNamara, head of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals in Scotland, called for councils to think again about any cuts.

“We know many councils are facing massive financial challenges,” he said. “However, we ask that they remember libraries are life-changing and support improvements in literacy, increase digital inclusion, reduce social isolation, and improve health and wellbeing.

“In politically divided times the library is a space for people to engage and is often the only space people can go without spending money. Any council that values its communities also values its libraries – and cuts to staffing, buildings or budgets may cause significant long-term damage”.

Western Isles is the other local authority looking to save on libraries.