Library hoping for place in lottery finals

Churchill Community College student Daniel Thirlaway voting online in Howdon Library. Looking on (from left to right) are Alan Strachan, director of extended services at the college, and Coun George Westwater, cabinet member for community and regulatory services.
Churchill Community College student Daniel Thirlaway voting online in Howdon Library. Looking on (from left to right) are Alan Strachan, director of extended services at the college, and Coun George Westwater, cabinet member for community and regulatory services.
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COMMUNITY spirited students are hoping their backing of a local library has been enough to help land it a place in a national final.

Howdon Library won a place in the semi-finals of the National Lottery Awards, being one of only ten schemes to make it through in the Best Education Project Category.

The library was previously unfit for purpose and only opened on a part-time bases but was replaced by a state-of-the-art library and a new mobile library for children and families thanks to a £1.3m grant from the Big Lottery Fund and North Tyneside Council in 2010.

The project – called ‘Books & People @ Howdon Library’ – has been a success thanks to the contribution of students from Churchill Community College who have given up their free time to help initiate and deliver services.

And now the youngsters are hoping their support of the scheme was enough to secure it one of three places in the final of the lottery awards after voting closed on July 22.

Year 9 student Daniel Thirlaway, 14, and a member of the library’s steering group since the rebuilding work started in 2009, said: “It’s been very exciting being part of this group and getting involved in library projects.

“We have met with a whole range of people and told them what the young people would like to see in the library.

“It’s great that lots of our ideas have been listened to by the adults who make the decisions.”

Coun George Westwater, cabinet member for community and regulatory services, said: “The library has established itself as a central point of contact in the local community.”