COUNCILLOR Harker states that Darlington Borough Council was right to suggest moving the library service from Crown Street to the Dolphin Centre (Echo, Apr 3).

Firstly, it was not a suggestion. They announced that this was their intention, and then spent three months holding a consultation.

The major finding of this consultation was that the overwhelming majority (over 90 per cent) did not want this move.

This was backed up by demonstrations, public meetings, social media groups, letters in HAS etc.

The council ignored public opinion in their belief that they were right.

What would have happened without the campaign, which delayed the move and eventually led the council to reconsider?

The service would have been moved to an unsuitable location, and the building would be empty and neglected.

One of the reasons given for the move was to save costs. Does Cllr Harker think it was right to waste council taxpayers’ money on: architects and planners fees for the Dolphin Centre; two court cases, following which they performed a U-turn on the decision they had been defending; two consultations, the results of which they ignored; and council staff costs?

This takes no account of the distress caused to library staff, some of whose jobs hung in the balance, and to the people of Darlington and beyond who had no wish to see the Crown Street building abandoned.

When the welcome announcement was made that the library was to stay at Crown Street, there was a general feeling of relief and a wish to put past disagreements to one side.

However, I believe that the campaign to stop the move was right, and that the council’s plan was ill-advised and clearly wrong from the beginning.

Sheila Harris, Darlington