Community given extra time to take over village library

Newarthill Library
Newarthill Library

Newarthill Community Council wants to establish a new group to take over the running of the village library and turn it into a community hub.

Culture NL recently announced £1.5 million in savings, which included no longer operating services from the Kirkhall Road facility.

However, following an appeal from the community council, North Lanarkshire Council has agreed to provide additional funding so the library will remain open until the end of January.

This will allow time for a management group to be convened with the intention of providing many of the current library services along with new and enhanced ones.

Community council chairman Robert Paterson: “While everyone was disappointed by the closure of the library, we welcome the extension of the period before the closure and hope the new group will take over the running of the building in February.

“However, to achieve our vision of a warm and welcoming hub, run by local people for the benefit of the whole community, we need volunteers to join a steering group for the new organisation.”

Members of the steering group will be responsible for establishing a new organisation with charitable status, and then be able extend the membership, plan future developments and secure funding.

CultureNL chairwoman Councillor Heather McVey said: “We fully support the community council’s ambitions, it’s a terrific example of the people pulling together, and have agreed to provide professional advice and support to help them achieve their goal.”

Anyone interested in getting involved should call Mr Paterson on 07794 293020 or community council secretary Josephine Mackenzie on 07963 736914.