Since 2012 the Friends Group have been working as members of a joint Steering Group with the Library Service of the County Council to plan the development of the building. The starting point was to establish what the community wanted and we helped carry out an extensive consultation including:
- a paper and on-line questionnaire,
- open meetings,
- 3 surveys at Milton Road School of Key Stage 1, Key Stage 2 and Parents; and
- a young persons’ group discussion
From this it was clear that there was great support for the library and for potential ways to develop it further as a hub for community activities. We were able to see more clearly how this municipal building might be open much more than the current 27 hours per week use as a library. It could be a more flexible place used much more of the time. A wide range of ideas emerged including:
- offering a safe, accessible and flexible community space suitable for groups/services working with members of the community
- spaces to host children’s parties, events for pre-school children and perhaps an after-school club,
- A venue for local clubs and interest groups in the day and evenings, such as poetry sessions, book clubs, and adult education classes for older people.
- A café, information centre, art exhibitions etc
For current information on the redevelopment plans, please see the news section.