SOUL respond to library statement

Unedited press release from Save Our Unique Library
In response to the press release by the three DCC councillors regarding the decision to move the library from the Victoria  Hall to one of a possible two sites within the Adult Education car park and their statement that and we quote " ..SOUL..have had more than three years to bring a credible, costed and funded plan forward and library users cannot wait another three years for nothing to come forward again.." we would like readers to know why we have been unable to do just that.

We were given permission to show architects around the Victoria Hall from September 2013,  just 5 months after the May elections, after our group had drawn up and agreed a reconfiguration  design brief. At that time the government were funding Locality who were able to give grants for feasibility studies. This funding is no longer available.
In November 2013 we sent a draft application to Locality, received quotes from three architects and then we received this from HPBC and we quote, "...HPBC is actively working with DCC , as library service provider , regarding future use and occupation of the building and in the circumstances , access to the building will not be permitted to any parties for any purpose."
It is impossible for anyone to do a feasibility study on a  building to which  you are not allowed access. Without a feasibility study no one can come up with a costed plan.
In January 2014 we met with both Councils and in their written notes of the meeting this was stated in their Planned Way Forward and we quote, " ...we were awaiting the library services plan of what they needed for the library in terms of space etc. the library services have been asked to do that and present it to the project team for the next meeting . Once we have this the authorities will engage with Glossop SOUL again on this bases and for consultation once it is clear. But we will also approach other groups etc and the public."
The DCC Councillors informed  us on the day they announced that they intended to move the library to the Adult Education Centre car park  one and half years later on Wednesday 7th October 2015
For our own feasibility study we also  needed to know the space requirements of the library. If you do not know what space is remaining no one can cost in estimated revenue or maintenance and running costs.
We are now embarking on that feasibility study having requested and been given permission to access the building for that purpose. This aim of this study will form the basis of a plan to  provide the residents of Glossopdale  with what they have stated they want which is a refurbished multi- purpose Victoria Hall which houses our library.
Michael Clarke Chair SOUL
November 10th 2015.

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