URGENT CALL TO ACTION PLEASE FRIENDS …..


REALLY EXCITING.  WE’RE SO CLOSE TO GETTING THE SIGN OFF FOR A FULLY REBUILT, BIGGER, BETTER LIBRARY WITH FANTASTIC ADDITIONAL FACILITIES TO SUPPORT THE ENTIRE COMMUNITY.  THE FUNDING PANEL ARE MEETING ON THURSDAY 14th AUGUST – PLEASE EMAIL DAVID PHILIPS AND SYBIL CROUCH TO EXPRESS YOUR SUPPORT FOR THE REBUILD.

THANK YOU.  YOUR EMAIL REALLY COULD MAKE ALL THE DIFFERENCE!

Introducing the Pennard Vernon Watkins Library

Pennard Library is celebrating its 50th Year! The old building has served its community well, but now a much needed rebuild is on the cards. In April, grants were obtained by the LA, working together with the Friends of Pennard Library (FoPL) to refurbish the library. In June, FoPL obtained an agreement in principle for a further grant of £100,000 from the Pennard Community Charity. This means that it is now possible to rebuild the library at no additional cost to the local authority.

God willing, in September 2014, it is hoped that the existing building will be demolished and that the new Pennard Vernon Watkins Library will open early in 2015. The External Funding Panel meets on 14th August to decide whether the rebuild will get the go ahead. Please email David Philips (david.phillips@swansea.gov.uk) and Sybil Crouch (sybil.crouch@swansea.gov.uk) to express your support for the rebuild.

The new building will be twice as big as its predecessor and, on the ground floor, will include toilet facilities for the disabled, a café area, and a community area fully geared up for IT usage and group use. This multi-use space can also be used for exhibitions or quiet study. On the first floor, also accessible to disabled persons, will be an atrium and a large open space which can be used: for larger exhibitions by local artists; as an area for watching films or as a curriculum area for the adjacent primary school – the possibilities are numerous.

Front (North) elevation of the proposed Pennard Vernon Watkins Library

Front (North) elevation of the proposed Pennard Vernon Watkins Library

Councillor Nick Bradley, Cabinet Member for Regeneration, has made it clear, that with the huge budget cuts faced by the council, that FoPL has to find ways of making the library self-sustaining. Councillor Keith Marsh, said, “If the library is simply refurbished, we won’t be able to make it self-sustaining, as without the café and the hiring of the community space – there won’t be anything substantial to generate income.”

When asked why the new library was to bear the name of Vernon Watkins, FoPL Secretary, Councillor Lynda James said, “Vernon Watkins lived for a time in the village of Southgate, in Heatherslade cottage – which is now the Heatherslade retirement home on the edge of Pennard Cliffs. Vernon, and his wife Gwen, often entertained Dylan Thomas at the house and many of Vernon’s poems, such as Taliesin in Gower are testaments to his love of this inspiring coast.”

In this time of austerity, it is hoped that this joint venture between the local authority and the local community will provide a model that will prevent further closure of libraries, and safe-guard the vital professional librarian-led service.

For more information, please contact: Chair of FoPL, Sarah Joiner, at sarah@tekkies.co.uk  01792 232001

 

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