CAMPAIGNERS have criticised a veteran Tory councillor who said he is “sick and tired” of a debate on the future of a town’s library.

In a leaked email, Tendring councillor for Manningtree Carlo Guglielmi referred to some Save Our Libraries Essex campaigners as “left wing extremists”.

He said campaigners for Manningtree Library could “wrap the thing in aspic and be done with it”.

Essex County Council reversed its decision to close 25 libraries in July but has asked for volunteers to run some smaller facilities including Manningtree Library.

Manningtree’s library campaigners are fighting to prevent volunteers running their facility.

Mr Guglielmi praised what he described as the true campaigners and apologised to the ones he has offended.

The email exchange which was leaked to SOLE was between Mr Guglielmi and Susan Barker, the council’s cabinet member responsible for libraries.

Within the exchange, Mr Guglielmi admitted libraries were a “prickly issue during the May elections” and said he was “sick and tired of the whole library issue”.

However, he also demonstrated an agreement with campaigners on the need for transparency over who has submitted a takeover bid for Manningtree Library.

A SOLE spokesman said the group is strictly a non-party political campaign which has received support from across the political spectrum.

He added: “It is though worth noting that even Mr Guglielmi is in agreement with us on the need for transparency regarding library takeovers.”

Mr Guglielmi denied he did not care about the future of Manningtree Library.

He said: “Back in January at a public meeting about the library, I said I did not know what was going on with the library. “I used to use it when my children were young.

“We tried to get the library rebutted from a tier three to a tier two and worked hard.

“The campaigners used the library to discredit me but there are more issues to worry about too including health, education, jobs and housing.”