Library work starts next month

WORK to fit out Portishead’s new library will begin next month.

WORK to fit out Portishead’s new library will begin next month.

Interior design work at the Horatio House units in Harbour Road is almost complete and the tender for the internal fit-out will go out in the next few weeks.

It is hoped contractors will begin work at the site, a lease for which was bought by North Somerset Council in the summer for �1.7million, in early November with stocking and staff training planned for mid-March.

If all goes to plan this would see the library open at the start of April.

North Somerset Council executive member Felicity Baker said: “As with any building project these dates are subject to change, but I will be pressing officers and contractors to make sure these dates don’t slip and that the people of Portishead can benefit from a modern, well-equipped library as soon as possible.”

North Somerset Council has taken on a 997 year lease for the Horatio House units and plans to spend �750,000 on the interior with an additional �125,000 needed for specialist library shelving and equipment.

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The new facility will include regular library services as well as a council access point.

The new site will replace previous plans by developers PG Enterprises for a �6million development that would have included a library as well as 32 residential flats.

Cllr Baker added: “The planning permission for the original library scheme was approved five years ago and we still don’t have a new library.

“The Portishead community has expanded dramatically over the last decade and a new library is desperately needed.”