Stradbroke Library Expansion Plans as IPS Takes Control

Stradbroke Library with IPS banner
Stradbroke Library marked its first day open under IPS control on Thursday as plans to expand the library received a welcome boost with news of a grant from Suffolk County Council towards building costs. The Library and Courthouse working group is to meet in the next few weeks to plan the work. The library currently occupies only part of the downstairs of the Courthouse building and the proposed changes will install doors allowing the library to expand into the downstairs of the Courthouse.

The downstairs area will also be used for the proposed Courthouse Community Cafe and as small venue for cultural events such as book readings and to showcase emerging musical talent. The plans also include more computers and wireless Internet access as well as a small retail area offering greeting cards and similar items.

The idea is to involve the community in a very practical way in the project and several people already have paintbrushes, screwdrivers and the like ready to volunteer their services.

For Stradbroke the transfer of the library and courthouse building to the IPS provides an opportunity for local volunteers to focus on widening the use of the building with the knowledge that the library service is secure. It also means at this stage we do not need to concern ourselves with issues such as building leases.

Stradbroke Library Manager Maureen John
who is also a Parish Councillor and member of the
Library and Courthouse Working Group
Library Manager Maureen John is excited by the plans and sees her role as co-ordinating the volunteers to run what will be a much wider “community hub”. Following the temporary closure of the post office the Courthouse is also being discussed as a possible future location for a post office service.

It does look like we will end up with an expanded library service and a greater use of volunteers not to replace in any way the work done by paid library staff but to add to it.

For a small library like Stradbroke with volunteers  already committed to a number of community projects the fact the IPS is handling staffing and buildings issues a real boon. It means we don’t need to worry about these things and can get on with our plans to expand the service.
suffolk libraries IPS 2774097193935217141

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