Campaigners have secured almost 2,500 signatures for a petition against the planned closure of a library.

Harrow Council, which must cut its budget by £75 million over the next four years, is currently running a consultation on the closure of Bob Lawrence Library in Mollison Way.

Farah Sadiq, who lives nearby and regularly uses the library with her three children, said she started the petition because she wanted to do something.

She said:  “I’m not from around here originally, I grew up in Singapore, so I understand that this library is a social hub, it provides all sorts of different kinds of support to people.

“Children come here to do their homework. Their parents can’t afford computers and they come here, where they have a quiet and safe space, away from distractions.

“I know of two older ladies who come here every day together. They get their fresh air by walking here, flick through some books, chat to each other, and then go home.

“There’s another lady who came here every day to learn to use the computer, so that she could get a job.”

Amamara Kanta, aged 80, of Lawrence Avenue, says she visits the library every day to read.

Another library user, who did not want to be named, said: “There are plenty of other ways the council could save money without closing a place where young people can come and learn and gain access to books and education. Where will they go if not here? The streets?”

Daiana Berende, 15, who uses the library to revise for GCSE exams, said: “I see mothers with children and old people in here every day.

“If they closed the library, maybe it wouldn’t be so bad for me because I’m young and can travel to another library or something, but if you’ve got small children and no car, or you’re old, that would be a problem.”

Ms Sadiq said people cannot use nearby Burnt Oak Library, which is run by Barnet Council, as that is also under threat of closure, while Kingsbury Library, run by Brent Council, has access problems.

She said: “To get to Kingsbury Library it you use Queensbury tube station, which has several flights of steps. If you have a buggy, it’s just not possible. And then there are the buses – only one buggy allowed on at a time.”

Business owners with shops around the library, such as Ravji Hirani, owner of Shay Naiy Sweet Mart, and Jay Patel, of McKenzie Chemist, have all been supporting Ms Sadiq’s petition and encouraging customers to sign it.

Piymsh Patel, who runs a nearby post office, said: “It’ll be bad for local businesses. People come to this parade of shops to use the library, and they use the shops while they’re here. This parade has everything for people, they come and can do everything in one place.”

But Councillor Sue Anderson said “tough decisions” had to be made. She said: “We do not want to be in the position of closing any libraries because we understand how important they are to the community, but the reality is that we need to save £75 million over the next four years.”

She added: “We understand residents feel strongly about their library service and why they want to try to save their local library, but the proposed closure of four libraries, including Bob Lawrence, could save the council more than £2 million over four years; allowing us to fund other vital services across the borough.  

“However, to ensure that residents are given the opportunity to express their opinions, we are running a consultation on the proposals for our library service, which closes on the 19 January. I would urge residents to contribute to this.”

Cllr Anderson added that no decisions would be made until the outcome of the consultation had been considered.