District library to reopen after £35,000 of flood repairs

The damage at Bilton library.
The damage at Bilton library.

After a major flood forced Bilton and Woodfield Community Library to close in January, costing £35,000 in repairs, the service is set to officially reopen on May 6 .

Library volunteers were shocked to discover the extent of the damage caused by the flood water, with the floors of the library, the children's centre and meeting rooms all needing replacing.

The opening celebrations start at 11am on May 6, and special artwork created by residents through the Creative Residencies project will all be on show.

Art on display will include an embroidered map of the Harrogate district, created during workshops with local artist Janet Browne, and Roald Dahl-themed stop-frame animations - created in workshops last summer with Yorkshire artist Dawn Feather.

The library opened its doors again at the end of March, but this official reopening will mark the end of months of flood-induced uncertainty, and celebrate North Yorkshire County Council funding of the repairs.

Julie Blaisdale, the County Council’s Assistant Director for Libraries and Community Services, said: “It’s wonderful to see Bilton and Woodfield Community Library reopened and once again offering its wide-ranging services to local people.

"The art on display from the Creative Residencies programme is an excellent example of just how diverse and inspiring the work done within the county’s libraries can be.”

Greta Knight, chairman of Bilton and Woodfield Community Library Group, said: “Whilst the closure of the library was a severe blow to us we will now rise to the challenge of showing we are back stronger than ever.

"This event gives us an excellent opportunity to show what our library, of which we are incredibly proud, has to offer. We are grateful to the County Council for the efficient way the whole incident was dealt with.”