Whitburn village library all set to re-open

A new chapter is being written at a local village library which is re-opening thanks to volunteers.

By Tom Patterson
Monday, 01 April, 2019, 10:40
Coun Fay Cunningham with Whitburn Library's volunteers

Whitburn Library is to re-open on Saturday after being closed to enable the charity to upgrade the computer network, re-decorate, train volunteers and install new toilet facilities.

The library was under threat because of cuts by South Tyneside Council but has now been taken over by the charity Friends of Whitburn Library - set up by vet Rory Thomson.

The charity negotiated the future of the library and council bosses agreed to transfer the building to the volunteers and keep it open until the legal work had been

completed.

It will re-open on Saturday with an open day event showcasing the talents present in Whitburn and the surrounding area.

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Mr Thomson, chairman of Friends of Whitburn Library, said “This community asset transfer is bittersweet for me.  Libraries are an essential resource for the community and I feel they should be council operated and council funded. 

“On the other hand I am very excited that we have achieved the next best thing.  Working in partnership with South Tyneside Council enables us to maintain the comprehensive library service for Whitburn with the opportunity to expand and enhance the services on offer.”

He added: “I urge anyone who feels they can help or support us in any way to contact us at info@whitburnlibrary.co.uk”

Bestselling author Sheila Quigley will be opening the library and be available to sign copies of her books.

There will be a flavour of the village’s heritage on display as well as craft activities and a trail for the children.