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Library to be moved to share building with other services - and more in Norfolk could follow suit

PUBLISHED: 13:21 27 February 2019 | UPDATED: 13:27 27 February 2019

Attleborough Library could be moved. Pic: Google.

Attleborough Library could be moved. Pic: Google.

Google

A Norfolk library is likely to move to a new home shared with other services - and other libraries in the county could make similar switches.

The Attleborough Community and Enterprise Centre. 
Photo: Angela SharpeThe Attleborough Community and Enterprise Centre. Photo: Angela Sharpe

Bosses at Norfolk County Council want to move Attleborough Library from Connaught Road to a new location in the Attleborough Community and Enterprise Centre, barely 250 metres away, in Church Street.

The council says it would be a pilot project for a new way of working to join up services.

The library, visited by more than 42,000 people last year, would share the centre with a string of services supporting the community.

That would include services such as adult education, early years provision, a community cafe and rooms used for community health, services for adults with learning disabilities and by voluntary groups.

Jan Holden, head of libraries at Norfolk County Council. Picture: DENISE BRADLEYJan Holden, head of libraries at Norfolk County Council. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

There would also be better toilets, including changing places toilets for disabled people.

Members of the county council’s communities committee will be asked on Wednesday to agree to the switch as part of its new local service strategy.

In a report which will come before councillors, Janet Holden, head of library services, said: “Developing multi-function hubs will enable us to realise opportunities offered by more integrated services and to create fit for purpose service delivery spaces.”

If the move goes through, the council would look to sell the current library building. It is estimated it could fetch £200,000.

It would cost £150,000 to make the changes to the Enterprise Centre while the move would save the council about £10,000 a year in management costs.

The relocated library would be slightly bigger than the current one. The council says all existing staff would move to the new site and existing opening hours would not change.

A county council spokesman said: “It’s part of our drive to join-up services in our communities, offering help early and in the right places. This will be better for people and better for the council, by making best use of our resources.

“Once we have assessed the results of this pilot, we will announce plans for further centres in other parts of the county.”

The library would close for a week during the move, with dates to be announced shortly.

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