Volunteers start new chapter in 40th year

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Volunteers are celebrating Bilton and Woodfields library’s 40th anniversary, something they didn’t think they would be doing at this time last year.

The library, which is housed in The Old Vicarage, was under threat of closure until a campaign group agreed to take over the running of the library.

Volunteer Anne Richards said: “Last year the library was on North Yorkshire County Council’s list to close it down.

“We have managed to keep it open for the community.”

What started as a campaign group to save the library from closure has turned into a team of volunteers who staff the library.

Mrs Richards said: “Some volunteers do a few days a week others do a few days a month, the hardest part is definitely organising who works when.”

The library is currently being kept afloat by funding grants, but in the future the team of volunteers will have to look at raising funds themselves.

Mrs Richards said: “A church held a coffee morning for us and we had a stand at the gala but we might have to do more in the future.”

Mrs Richards said that the biggest misconception people have of the library is that now it is not run by North Yorkshire County Council there is no new intake of reading material.

“People think we just have the same old books,” she said.

“We are still linked to the council so we are getting new books all the time including new releases.”

A computer decides which books the library will stock based on what has been previously popular.

Mrs Richards added: “We get quite a lot of crime novels.

“It seems that people in Bilton like their crime!”

The library currently hosts a story time for under 5-year-olds on Tuesday mornings and a reading group that meet on Thursdays at 7.30.

From this month a second reading group will start meeting on Wednesday afternoons.

For more information contact the library on 01423 564630.

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