Victory as library is saved by community
A COMMUNITY has battled to save its library from closure, and now will run the service themselves.
If the library had closed in Cerrigydrudion, residents would have had to travel 15 miles to Llanrwst or Ruthin to get to the nearest library.
Luckily a partnership has been formed between Conwy County Council and Cerrigydrudion Community Library Support Group, which will safeguard library services in the Uwchaled area.
The keys to the village’s library building have been presented to the support group, officially marking the launch of only the second community library of its kind in the county.
The local authority will continue to provide core library services, such as staff time, books and computers, but the premises will be managed by the support group (CCLSG).
Cllr Chris Hughes, Conwy’s cabinet member for communities, said: “This initiative is part of our project to modernise libraries across the county and provide a sustainable service for the future.
“We were successful in our application for a grant from Conwy Rural Partnership’s Key Fund, which allowed us to renovate the building.
“That work has been completed and I’m delighted we’re handing over the keys to CCLSG, and pleased to see the community library model being rolled-out.”
The library building will be officially taken over by the group on a 25 year lease.
Einion Edwards chairman of the Cerrigydrudion Community Library Support Group said: “I’m delighted that we’ve been able to save our library, which is an essential resource in this rural area.
“In addition, we hope to host sessions from the Citizens Advice Bureau, support Cartrefi Conwy’s local activities and make the building a focal point for local support services.”
Cllr Peter Lewis MBE who is also a trustee of the support group said: “I’m a user of the library myself, and I’m happy to say it’s a well used facility.
“At present it will be open three afternoons a week, but this could be expanded as we do also have plans about making it into a tourist information hub.
“A couple of years ago there was an air of depression in the village, the two pubs had closed and the local garage, but now the pubs have reopened, the local snooker club has got a grant, and the library has had a facelift, it’s all very positive news.”
Val Wilkinson and Peter Lewis at Cerrigydrudion Library