TRAFFORD Council is to open a new state-of-the-art library on the site of the former Altrincham General Hospital on Market Street.
The Altrincham development was handed over to NHS Property Services last week and will house the new library when the current one on Stamford New Road closes.
The library will offer an Open + system which will allow customers access without staff being present. The system has been working successfully in Scandinavia for more than 10 years and has been in Woodsend Library in Urmston for the last three years. Under the new system, customers gain entry to the library via a keypad using their library card and PIN. This technology will enable customers to use the library every evening Monday – Friday and on Sundays.
Customers can borrow, return and renew books via the self-service kiosks; use the public access computers, printer and photocopier - and community groups can use the library for meetings.
As part of the original plans for the site, NHS Trafford Clinical Commissioning Group was proposing to use the site as a community hub including GP and community services which would deliver both primary and community care services to the population of South Trafford. The CCG is now re-visiting its long term strategy on health provision and will discuss all options to ensure the best health outcomes and the best use of public money at its next Governing Body meeting at the end of this month.
Anthony Hassall, interim Accountable Officer at Trafford CCG, said: “We are delighted that the Altrincham development is now complete, at a superb site in the town centre. The original plan in 2015 was to provide a GP offer at the site. The CCG is now considering all opportunities for the use of the building to ensure it is utilised to best effect and will consider viable options at the next meeting of the Governing Body.”
Kevin Procter, Trafford Council Executive Member for Communities and Housing, said: “The new library is fantastic news for everyone in Altrincham. It is central to the development of the former Altrincham General site and will sit beautifully in the town centre.
“We are very proud of the fact that we are investing in a new library when local authorities across the country are closing them down. We, as a Council, are passionate about our libraries and believe they are vital to the community. I look forward to the library opening – it will serve thousands of families and individuals across the borough and is sure to be a success.”
A 13ft high sculpture in front of the library - The 'Eudaemonium' – has already been built outside the library. The wooden and bronze sculpture contains a cupboard complete with shelves and beautiful artwork. Artist Stephen Broadbent was commissioned to create an artwork which would symbolise the benefits the complex will provide.
Posted on Thursday 11th October 2018