Shropshire Star

Campaigners lose fight to stop Church Stretton library being moved

Campaigners have lost their fight against the relocation of Church Stretton Library, it has been revealed.


The final decision to relocate the library into the town's secondary school has been made after months of campaigning against the plans from a community action group.

Felicity Thomas, spokeswoman for the Church Stretton Library Support Group said it was "a sad day" for the group.

She said: "We are extremely disappointed. We thought if we worked with the authorities they would want to work with us, but that doesn't look like it has been the case.

"We know it may not mean the closure of the library but it does mean the that a lot of people in the community that use it as a life line will not have easy access to the public library.

"It could mean in just a couple of years a closure could come about.

"We hope now the decision is scrutinised and we would of course ask Shropshire Council to think again.

"A public library is a treat and a lifeline, but it is becoming less and less public."

But the decision was made this morning by Councillor Steve Charmley, Shropshire Council's portfolio holder for business growth, ip&e, culture and commissioning.

Before the meeting, officers at Shirehall recommended he should proceed with the plan – in a report officers Michael Lewis and Kate Garner recommended the plans for the move saying it will "create a modern, sustainable and accessible library service in Church Stretton that reflects the council's vision for a transformed library service as well as maximise revenue savings for the council".

The meeting concluded that a "coterminous public and school library be created at Church Stretton School and Church Stretton's library service be relocated to, and delivered from, this newly designed shared space".

It added that work would be undertaken to facilitate Shropshire Council working with the community and local partners as detailed within the report of the Director of Commissioning.

The decision is subject to call-in if it is challenged by another member of the authority.

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