Library will stay open

tis  Bilton Library.  110124M1b.
tis Bilton Library. 110124M1b.

BILTON Library will be kept open after a plan for it to be run by volunteers was approved.

North Yorkshire County Council’s assistant chief executive approved the proposals by the Friends of Bilton Library on Monday.

It means the library will be run by Bilton and Woodfield Community Library Group, which intends to become a charity. It will remain in its current home for the next 12 to 18 months, before being relocated to the new children’s centre at Woodfield Primary School.

“This is a tremendous achievement by people across the county who rightly said that their libraries are a hugely valuable and much-loved resource,” said Coun Chris Metcalfe, executive member for library and community services.

“The way in which they responded to the challenge of producing robust business plans, of mobilising support and organising volunteers, is a remarkable feat.

“Although they received support at every step of the way from the professionals in the council’s library service – and from other community groups - ultimately at the end of the day it was their hard work and determination which brought about this result. They deserve the heartfelt thanks of everyone.”

Bilton Library as under threat of closure last year when the county council announced it would withdraw its funding. Although Starbeck and Pateley Bridge libraries were initially listed for closure, huge community campaigns, led by the Harrogate Advertiser and Nidderdale Herald, were successful in making the council agree to continue some support for the two sites.