Whalley celebrates as library reopens

Monday, January 29, 2018

Lancashire County Council's flagship programme to reopen libraries which closed over a year ago marked another milestone today as Whalley Library became the latest to reopen.

The library on Abbey Road was reopened this morning (Monday 29 January) by County Councillor Albert Atkinson, deputy leader of Lancashire County Council, who represents the local area.

Following the closure of 26 of the county's 73 libraries by Lancashire County Council towards the end of 2016, a new administration was elected in May 2017, and has decided to re-open as many libraries as possible.

Plans have been agreed for the phased reopening of libraries, and Whalley is the ninth to reopen following the reopening of Silverdale library, Parbold library, Burnley Campus Library, Bolton-le-Sands Library, and Fulwood Library in late 2017, and Freckleton Library, Oswaldtwistle Library, and Barrowford Library earlier this month.

Lostock Hall Library and Thornton Library are also due to reopen over the coming weeks.

To mark the reopening and promote a new initiative designed to engage visitors to libraries and encourage them to expand their reading interests, County Councillor Atkinson was presented with a mystery book parcel, containing a randomly selected gem from the library catalogue. Anyone can pick up a mystery book parcel at a Lancashire Library as part of the Try Something New campaign.

County Councillor Atkinson said: "This is a busy rural town where people value their local library very highly, and I could not be more pleased to have the honour of reopening Whalley Library today.

"It is not easy for everyone to travel to the next town to reach a library and people have missed Whalley Library while it has been closed. One of the reasons that libraries are so well-loved is because they provide vital educational and information resources in convenient reach for people, whatever their circumstances.

"Our library staff work very hard to make them engaging and welcoming places where there's always something new to discover. I was very pleased to unwrap my mystery book to find Travelling Light by Alastair Sawday. I like reading books about travel but this is not one I would necessarily have chosen – however the synopsis about slow travel which focuses on the stories of the local people who the author meets along the way is intriguing, and I'm very much looking forward to reading it."

County Councillor Peter Buckley, cabinet member for community and cultural services, said: "Local libraries offer a vital service, providing free access to books, information, and the internet for leisure and learning alike. They also perform a vital social function, being a place where people of all ages can meet, share interests, and engage in activities.

"We're committed to reopening libraries and this marks another important step in our programme of reopening libraries across Lancashire. We've now reopened many of those which had been closed and I'm looking forward to reopening more in the coming weeks."

Lancashire County Council's cabinet has so far made decisions to reopen 13 libraries, and agreed to transfer the ownership of a further seven libraries to local organisations which will operate them as independent community-run libraries. The county council is continuing work towards reopening libraries in all of the areas where libraries were closed.

Opening times for Whalley Library are:

Monday 9am to 1pm
Tuesday 9am to 7pm
Wednesday 9am to 5pm
Thursday Closed
Friday 9am to 5pm
Saturday 9am to 1pm
Sunday Closed

You can find out more about Lancashire County Council's Libraries and Archives at www.lancashire.gov.uk/libraries.

Tagged as: Libraries and Archives

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