Library - perfect site for community focus
PUBLISHED: 13:00 04 November 2011
A NEW For All Healthy Living Centre-style facility could be set up in Weston's historic library building if a group of councillors gets its way.
The library service is set to move into the new-style Town Hall next year, and its Boulevard home will be marketed in the near future.
Weston Central ward members want to see a facility like the Bournville estate’s flagship development set up there.
Councillor Clare Kingsbury-Bell said: “Our children’s centre is bursting at the seams and central ward suffers from a lack of open space for youngsters to play.
“There are plenty of issues that need tackling in the ward such as child poverty and obesity, but no natural hub to base projects that might help.
“We want to get multiple organisations around the table from charities, the health sector, council services and, of course, the community and see if we can work together to get something off the ground.”
Cllr John Crockford-Hawley has applied for the library building to be listed, which could pose problems for some potential developers.
Cllr Kingsbury-Bell and Cllr Mike Bell have met with North Somerset Council executive member for education Jeremy Blatchford, who they say was supportive of their ideas.
They say they also met two weeks ago with council leader Nigel Ashton and were pleased to see him voicing support in last week’s Mercury.
Cllr Kingsbury-Bell added: “We’re going to look at the For All Healthy Living Centre and how it was set up and became so successful and hopefully learn some lessons.
“We fundamentally think that losing the library building would be a loss to the community and it would be the perfect focal site for a facility aimed at meeting the needs of children, young people, parents, families and the older generation.
“Central ward has lost out time and time again for bigger community schemes like this and we hope now is the time to make something happen.
“We’re overtaking South Ward in deprivation indicators and without a centre the community can call its own it’s difficult to tackle some of these issues.”