Protesters from across North Essex gathered outside the county council offices in their hundreds in the hope they can save their libraries.

Banners were raised representing libraries including Prettygate in Colchester, Sible Hedingham, Southminster, Danbury and the rest of the 24 out of 74 county libraries at risk.

The campaign group, Save Our Libraries Essex (SOLE) led the march through the streets of Chelmsford City Centre which started at the Saracens Head in High Street to the county hall in Market Road.

One of the protesters, bidding for the libraries to be retained was Tony Sullivan, from Colchester.

He was concerned that if the communities affected did not protest about the loss of their libraries, “what will we get up and protest about?”

Mr Sullivan, said: “This is an absolutely critical demonstration for the people of Essex.

“The Tories claim they are going to save £3.50 per family, per year by closing these libraries in Essex.

“If we do not get up and protest about this, what will we get up and protest about?

“It is really important.”

Protesters from children to grandparents joined the demonstration which ended with speeches from leading lights of the campaign.

A consultation is being held until February 20, go to