THE first step towards the creation of community libraries in Rhoose, Sully, St Athan and Wenvoe has been called "a success" by the Vale council.

The council have also announced new opening times for Barry library.

The Vale of Glamorgan council has revealed that expressions of interest have been submitted for each of the closure threatened libraries.

This step is required to keep Rhoose, Sully, Dinas Powys, St Athan and Wenvoe libraries open following the Vale of Glamorgan Council’s library strategy being agreed earlier this year.

It has also been announced that from Monday, June 1 Barry and Penarth libraries will change to their new opening hours.

Following consultation with library users and residents at the end of 2014, results showed that people wished to have libraries open six days a week, with no closure during the lunch period and a late evening available at all libraries.

The changes will see Barry library open at 9.30am every day and close at 7pm on Mondays, 5.30pm from Tuesday to Friday, and 4pm on Saturdays.

Penarth libraries will all open at 10am and close at 5pm on weekdays and at 4pm on Saturdays, remaining open until 7pm on Thursdays.

Opening hours at Dinas Powys, Rhoose, St. Athan, Sully and Wenvoe libraries remain the same for the present.

Councillor Stuart Egan, Cabinet Member for Adult Services, said: “In April we asked those who felt they could take on the management of their local library to step forward. We have been delighted by the response.

"Everyone connected with this project wants to see library services maintained in all the communities where they currently operate. There is still a long way to go but this initial response is hugely encouraging."

Following the deadline for submission on Monday (May 18) at least one expression of interest has been received for each of the five libraries earmarked for transfer to the community.

The Vale of Glamorgan council will now work with each community group to help them develop a detailed business case. This will be the basis on which the final decision on transferring each library will be taken.

The establishment of community libraries is one of a number of measures, including changes to opening hours, which are being implemented as part of the Council’s library strategy. The strategy aims to save the Council £578k over the next two years.