Video: The official opening of a social lifeline for Harrogate and Knaresborough parents
The Harrogate and Knaresborough Toy Library officially reopened yesterday after a race against time to find a new home for thousands of toys collected over nearly three decades.
If the happy squeals and excitable giggles were anything to go by, the new facilities inside the library's new home at The Old School in Knaresborough were definitely an instant hit with children and parents
The hard-working toy library volunteers had what may have seemed an impossible task before Christmas - finding new premises after the county council announced plans to demolish their building in Harrogate, and managing to shift 27 years worth of toys.
But thanks to the determination of volunteers, and a wave of overwhelming generosity from the Knaresborough community, their move has been a huge success.
The toy library provides an important meeting point for new parents, tackling isolation, and supporting families on lower incomes in accessing thousands of educational toys and resources.
The support and generosity from organisations including the Knaresborough Lions, Knaresborough Town Council, The Old School itself, and Taylors of Harrogate, will go a long way towards keeping this invaluable community resource going.
The Mayor of Knaresborough, Coun David Goode, said: "I am wishing the toy library the greatest of futures in Knaresborough. You can see from the sheer level of enthusiasm and noise here today just how much it is enjoyed and appreciated - it's tremendous to see.
"It just shows that there is a need in town for this type of facility. I am looking forward to coming back and seeing how they are getting on."
Vicky Dixon, who regularly takes her children to the toy library, said: "It's a really good place to meet people and talk to other parents, I've made friends through coming here."
Harrogate and Knaresborough Toy Library Committee member Laura Seaton, said: "It is absolutely lovely to see it being used as it should be used. A lot of effort has gone into this from everybody. We didn't think we would be running when we found out that our old building was going, but we are so happy to be here.
"It is important for children to play, but it's also important for mums and parents to have a support network. I would not have half of my friends without the toy library."