A TEMPORARY library has opened its doors in its former site while discussions continue over the future of its current premises.
North Shields Central Library closed its doors in Northumberland Square last month following repeated failures with the heating and lift, leading to concerns it might fail again this winter.
As a result, North Tyneside Council has opened a temporary new home in the former North Tyneside Business Centre – the original North Shields Library – in Saville Street.
Paul Gowans, head of customer and cultural services at the council, said: “Due to a number of ongoing problems at Central Library, this temporary move is a necessity.
“If the heating system failed during the winter it would mean customers and staff would be faced with an unacceptably cold environment.
“Library opening times will remain the same, and although there will be a more limited service due to the space available, there will be a wide selection of books, DVDs, local studies materials, newspapers and PCs.
“Items for loan will be regularly topped up and requested items that customers make will be free of charge.”
A proposed £2.7m refurbishment of the library is set to be included in the 2012-13 budget which will then full council agreement.
The proposed scheme would transform the current building into North Shields Customer First Centre to feature state-of-the-art library facilities and a range of council services all under one roof, including:
n New library space featuring the latest in furniture and design;
n New entrance points including direct access from the Beacon Centre;
n Coffee facilities and community meeting rooms;
n Customer service facilities plus an automated cash payment kiosk.