Former Ellesmere library building going under the hammer at auction
A building which housed a town's former library has gone on the market.
Shropshire Council has put Fullwood House in Victoria Street up for sale after the library relocated to the town’s former cottage hospital in nearby Trimpley Street.
The Grade II listed building will be auctioned on December 11 by commercial property consultants Lambert Smith Hampton.
In its new location, the library forms part of a community centre – Our Space – on the ground floor of the old hospital, formerly known as the Meres Day Centre.
The new community facility includes provision for day care visitors and young people with learning difficulties, together with a cafe.
It is operated by the Shrewsbury-based social care charity Bethphage, which has taken over the management of the library from Shropshire Council.
The centre was officially opened in June by the actress and wildlife campaigner Virginia McKenna, star of the acclaimed 1960s film Born Free.
The proposal to relocate the library and customer service point was put forward by Shropshire Council two years ago as one of the cost-saving options in a programme of major spending cuts in public services.
Local people concerned about the potential loss of such a much-loved facility held a public meeting in September 2015 and the Friends of Ellesmere Library was formed to try to safeguard its future.
The friends’ second annual general meeting will be held at the town’s comrades’ club at 7.30pm next Tuesday.
Paul Golbourne, chair of the Friends of Ellesmere Library, said: "Local ukulele band The Ukey Monster will provide entertainment for what will be a free, fun night of a convivial nature as well as an opportunity for people to learn more about the group’s activities and future plans after another successful year.
"The evening is also a thank you to all members of the friends who have supported the library over the past year.”
Previously councillor Ryan Hartley, mayor of Ellesmere said it was important the former library building didn't fall into disrepair.
Councillor Hartley said: “It is a good, solid building. The basic structure is fine and I am sure something will be done with it.
“It is an old building which has been used for accommodation upstairs.
“For the whole building to be converted into accommodation it would need a lot doing to it, but you could probably have office space downstairs and accommodation upstairs.
“Hopefully something will be done to keep it going. I wouldn’t want to see it not used.”