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Rawtenstall Library was opened in 1906 and the official opening in 1907 was attended by Andrew Carnegie, who paid for the library to be built. The library was designed as part of a larger civic complex for the town but it was never completed. It was one of the first public libraries in the country to open with open-access to the books on the shelves. The library was operated by Rawtenstall Borough until 1974.
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