A NORTH-EAST council is looking for volunteers to run five of its libraries.

Gateshead Council has agreed to a proposal which would result in a core network of 12 libraries across the borough, with the remaining five libraries - at Sunderland Road, Low Fell, Winlaton, Lobley Hill and Ryton - being run by volunteers.

These community-run libraries would continue to get cash help from the council to meet their running costs.

The authority is also looking for volunteers to help with its Readers at Home service, which delivers books to housebound residents.

Gateshead Council is arranging further meetings in January to discuss and assess in more detail the commitment to and level of interest in volunteering and to discuss what support and training potential volunteers would require.

Councillor Linda Green, Cabinet member for Culture, says: β€œIt is important to stress that there has been no decision to close these five libraries.”

The meetings will be held at: Sunderland Road Library at 1.30pm on Wednesday; Low Fell Library at 6pm on Thursday; Ryton Methodist Church at 6pm on Monday, January 14; the Winlaton Community Centre at 10am on Tuesday January 15; Lobley Hill Community Centre at 10am on Wednesday January 16 and at Central Library at 6pm on Thursday January 17.