Weston Toy Library to close its doors

PUBLISHED: 13:00 31 January 2015

Toy Library staff at  locking Road business park.

Toy Library staff at locking Road business park.

Archant

WESTON Toy Library will soon close its doors due to a lack of funding, but its owners say they are still 'pleased' with what they have managed to achieve.

The library has provided a toy rental service to families in North Somerset for many years, but has been run by volunteers in its current form since 2013.

In 2012 the Springboard Opportunity Group stepped in to take over the Locking Road site when local authority funding was withdrawn.

It relaunched in September 2013 and has been run entirely by volunteers.

But the popular amenity has exhausted all known avenues of funding and is now looking to start the process of closing down as managers are unable to cover the rental and utility bills.

Library manager Ann Ramsey said: “We haven’t got enough funding and the membership fees aren’t covering our outgoings. We have tried applying for grants but they are not forthcoming at the moment.

“We are looking at options of other accommodation. But even if we manage to carry on we will have to have a substantial reduction in the number of toys and equipment.

“We would need somewhere which is free or pretty near free and a smaller amount of toys.

“If we reduce the amount of toys we would need to prioritise.

“But we are open to suggestions – at the moment we are just 
not loaning any toys.”

Mrs Ramsey and her team of volunteers are not bitter about the outcome because they say they ‘tried their best’, and made lots of children happy along the way.

Many parents have taken advantage of the service, which allows toys to be borrowed for a small charge.

She said: “We have tried, we have run it for 18 months longer than we thought we could, we are just pleased we have been able to do that.

“If it is not possible to keep it going then we have tried our best. I’m not complaining, it’s just the way it is.”

Library volunteers are holding an annual meeting at the headquarters in Locking Road at 6pm on Wednesday. Anyone with support or ideas is welcome to attend.

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