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Library’s final chapter confirmed

 
Created on 07/02/2019 @ 12:02
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Despite widespread opposition and promises that it wasn’t a ‘done decision’, Welshpool Library will close later this year and be downsized to squeeze in with Powysland Museum.

MyWelshpool was initially alerted to the move last year by a whistle-blower with Powys County Council saying it was an option being considered.

But campaigners, who had more than 4,000 signatures on a petition, accused the regional authority of making decisions behind closed doors and their fears, despite a pubic consultation, appear to have been confirmed with the decision published today on the council’s web site for intended decisions.

The council said it will safeguard the services long term for the town as they were left with no option amidst the need to make dramatic service cuts.

Below we have carried the Council’s full official press release:

Welshpool’s library will be relocated to the town’s Powysland Museum safeguarding the future of both services in the town, if an intended decision is confirmed, the county council has said.

The move, which is likely to take place later this year, completes a review of county council owned buildings in the north of the county.

In December the council’s cabinet approved changes to office accommodation which confirmed the closure of Neuadd Maldwyn – the council’s main building – with services moving to Newtown and alternative premises in Welshpool.

A decision on future core service accommodation in the town and the library was delegated to the Portfolio Holder for Highways, Recycling and Assets, Portfolio Holder for Young People and Culture and the Director of Environment.

A notice of intended decision was published on the council’s website today (February 7). 

Councillor Rachel Powell, Cabinet Member for Young People and Culture, said: “We thank the public for taking part in the consultation and for their many constructive suggestions which were carefully considered. Our aim has always been to make sure that the library and museum had a stable and sustainable future and I believe the decision has achieved that goal. 

“As a council we have already successfully co-located services in a number of towns and believe the decision will preserve valuable services in Welshpool and provide future opportunities for both the library and museum.”

Councillor Phyl Davies, Cabinet Member for Highways, Recycling and Assets, added: “We know the decision will be disappointing to some but we hope that service users and residents understand that we have to make the very best use of precious resources and that means taking difficult decisions.

“The financial pressures facing the council meant that the status quo was not viable and we believe that, having considered all options, co-location is the best option to maintain services and make the best use of the county council’s property.” 

A copy of the delegated intended decision is available on the council’s website and will become a decision on February 13.

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