A POOLE MP has taken the fight to retain Dorset’s libraries to the House of Commons.

Annette Brooke, MP for Mid-Dorset and North Poole, called for support for the 20 libraries faced with closure.

Dorset County Council is planning to cease funding for the threatened branches, despite preparing to build a new £1m library in Dorchester.

Mrs Brooke said libraries were the “heart and soul of our communities”.

During the Commons debate, she said: “We want to equip our children with the skills that they need for later life. Surely we must build on the use of libraries.”

The Dorset MP added there were innovative ways to get more people into libraries that needed to be backed up by skilled librarians and other staff.

The county council needs to find £54.9 million savings over the next three years, and around £800,000 is earmarked to come from the library service by 2012.