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Scores Protest Against Library's Demolition

Monday November 11 2013

MORE than 50 people packed into a lecture theatre in Barnsley Central Library to protest at the planned demolition of the building.

Everyone who spoke at the meeting, on November 2, expressed their commitment to the existing building and their opposition to its demolition to make way for a new sixth form college.

Kate Burland, who chaired the meeting, said: "For me this campaign is about ensuring the excellent purpose-built library we already have is not demolished. Moving is not an option, the current location and facilities are ideal."

Dave Gibson, who opposes the demolition, taught A-levels at Barnsley Sixth Form College for 24 years before retiring last year.

He agrees a new sixth form building is needed but said there are plenty of other places one could go.

"The plan to build it on Shambles Street is more about the impression a new building there gives to visitors to Barnsley than it is about what is best for students," he said.

Roy Bowser, secretary of Barnsley National Union of Teachers, said: "My union is committed to the library service in Barnsley and we oppose this plan. My members have instructed me to write to the council, expressing our opposition."

As a result of the protest meeting, it was agreed to set up an action committee to campaign during the four-week consultation period on the library's demolition, which started last Wednesday.

The first big public protest planned will be a 'Hands Off Our Library: Hands Around the Library' event on Saturday, November 16 at 11am.

Kate added: "The aim is to get enough people to get a complete circle around the library. We feel that will make a very visual statement that we will not let our library be pulled down."

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Reply Posted by librarian on Monday November 11 2013 at 10:38

Reply Posted by Shirley Brown on Monday November 11 2013 at 11:17
I used tp live in Barnsley and used the library regularly it needs tp be joined into the new 6th form college not separate. Just look at the sucess we here in Preston have had with saving pur bus station it can be done.

Reply Posted by Tarn Oratory on Monday November 11 2013 at 11:39
[Two things I can't stand: Change and the way things are]

That photo is perfect to highlight the point that there is no point making patches look nice when next to eyesores. Look how nice the fountains look next to the amazing building that is the town hall. bit by bit the town is starting to look nicer, and hopefully be treated better. Those shops up Shambles Street give the impression of ''dirge' town. Surely if a new development taking library position Shambles street (well the library side of the road) could use regenerating. It is not as though there wouldn't be a library provision - From what I've read it would be in the Civic building or the redeveloped area on Shambles Street.

Reply Posted by S Hoffs on Monday November 11 2013 at 17:20
That's true. I've said before it's unlikely anyone else would want to move onto Shambles St. It's out on a limb for shops, pubs and restaurants are more central too. So nobody else would want that site.

It's just a shame they can't use the shops/car park site and keep the library. Why not just build up instead of out. It already looks like a very squat version of Chicago in that part of town so another (low) high rise wouldn't hurt.

Make sure comments go on the consult.barnsley.gov.uk site - whinging on here will not help.

Reply Posted by lee c on Monday November 11 2013 at 19:58
i agree with "tarn". barnsley is slowly becoming modernised, but if library has to go, the all of that row should too. for years we had to suffer the sight of the old clothing store there and on entrance to barnsley, it wasn't a pretty site. i think what they have done with the town hall is really good ( not sure about the comb though ). we are getting there, it just needs the council to stop wasting money on crap such as the civic clock, statues.e.t.c.
i carnt say much for the shopping precinct as i tend to stay away from there as there is too many street vendors, ive eve thought of designing a t-shirt that says NO THANKS. yes we have too many pound & charity shops, but we only accommodate to what people can afford these days.

Reply Posted by LOL on Wednesday November 13 2013 at 08:30

Reply Posted by Jay Burgin on Friday November 15 2013 at 22:25
I can understand why they want to demolish it, and in my opinion, the row of old unused buildings look so shabby. The library is an iconic eyesore, and i do think it needs to go. But, i think it'd be a good idea to introduce a public library into the new sixth-form building. that way, people get the best of both worlds. a new library, a new sixth-form, and the town will look great around Townhall Area.

Reply Posted by Vicki on Friday November 15 2013 at 22:25
50 people....out of however many Barnsley has?!?!?!? Not nearly enough as council will not listen to the minority...thy whole row needs modernising desperately ...it's an eyesore whenever I come back m visit my family !!

Reply Posted by dan on Friday November 15 2013 at 23:35
Get it moved to the proposed place in Wellington house!

Library and those shops look an eyesore, make way for the future knock it down and build a nice looking building,