A library that was targeted by vandals forcing it to close its doors early will extend its opening times.

Cleator Moor Library slashed the hours it was open last year after youths terrorised staff and damaged property.

Customers were frightened to visit the library after school closing time, due to the thugs' behaviour.

County councillors cut the opening times by eight hours, with services only available between 9am and 2pm, four days a week.

Cumbria County Council has now confirmed that the library will resume normal opening hours two days a week, from Monday, October 8.

It will be open Mondays and Fridays 9am until 2pm and Tuesdays and Thursdays 9am until 1pm, 2pm until 5pm.

A spokesperson for Cumbria County Council said the risk to the public and library staff had passed and the hours had been extended to give people more access to the library's services.

Cleator Moor Town councillors are now urging people to use the library during the new opening hours.

Speaking at a recent meeting, Helen Gilmour, town clerk, said: "We need to encourage people to go there on these days."

Town councillors discussed how they could get more activities going in the library, with ideas put forward for art displays, craft sessions and coffee mornings.

Councillor Michelle Denwood, who runs the Cleator Caring Moor group, suggested using the library as a contact place for the group's annual Christmas appeal, which helps struggling families.

And Councillor Margaret Messenger suggested having a presence in the library for grandparents who look after their grandchildren during the day.

Speaking to The Whitehaven New , Nick Ford, chairman of Cleator Moor Town Council, said: "I think the extended opening times is great for the town and library. It will give those that cannot use it earlier in the day the opportunity to now do so.

"There are ongoing discussions on the uses we can put it to with several ideas put forward. Some I hope will be implemented soon to encourage more use of the library.

"If more people are present it will also deter any re-occurrence of the anti-social behaviour, although there has been no further incidences of trouble to date. I feel it is for the people of the community to support the library as much as possible as it is their library.”

Mrs Gilmour added: "We are delighted. It means children coming home from school and people who work can go in the library. It makes it more accessible."