£1m makeover set to give new lease of life to Scunthorpe Central Library

By Scunthorpe Telegraph | Posted: 24 Aug 2017

Scunthorpe's Central Library is to be given a new lease of life with a £1 million project to transform it into a community hub.

The library, in the Church Square area of the town centre, has been open for 43 years.

Now, North Lincolnshire Council has announced it intends to start work in November on a complete internal makeover of the building.

When complete, it will continue to function as a library but the authority also aims for it to become a focal point for people to meet, access job and training opportunities and get housing and health advice, plus a whole range of information, all under one roof.

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The investment forms part of a £60 million package for the town centre which was announced last month and also includes a university centre, a 200-unit facility for NHS employees and a scheme for up to 60 homes on Lindum Street.

Council leader Rob Waltham said: “We are strengthening our offer so that instead of people having to go to different buildings, they will be able to go to just one right in the heart of the town to access a whole range of services under one roof.

“This is a major investment that will see a more flexible, accessible, joined-up approach.

“We want to provide a vibrant community space where people can go and do all sorts of things from young people taking part in activities to adults getting help to find a job or advice on how to improve their health, plus much more.

The library scheme forms part of a proposed £60 million investment into Scunthorpe town centre. Pictured at the launch of the investment are (from left): Iain Lloyd, British Steel UK Accounts Manager, Ongo Chief Executive Andy Orrey, Leader of North Lincolnshire Council, Councillor Rob Waltham and Britcon (UK) Ltd director Shaun Hunt.

“We want to create a ‘go to’ place for information, advice and lifelong learning services that are second to none, while at the same time, retaining a strong library presence.

“Better access to high quality services that improve health and wellbeing and result in more people getting job and training opportunities is key to our plans to transform the library.

“We are continuing to keep our promise to residents by investing in libraries and giving them a new lease of life.”

A public event is set to be held by the council in September for people to see the plans for the project, with the library then earmarked to close for the refurbishment on Saturday, November 11.

Staff will relocate to The Base, which is to open its doors temporarily from Monday, December 4 for people to access services including borrowing books and using computers.

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The Central Library project is set to include creating new meeting rooms and activity spaces, refurbishing the library, creating a new shared ground floor reception and a range of self-serve access and improved IT services.

The children’s library and local studies service will remain and the council says there will still be a wide selection of books to suit all tastes.

Specialist services including local history and a regular programme of children’s events and activities will also remain in place.

The new facility is set to be fully open by spring next year.

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