Three smallest Powys libraries transferring to community groups

Image of bookshelves in a library

15 March 2021

Image of bookshelves in a libraryThe libraries in Llanfair Caereinion, Talgarth and Llanwrtyd Wells are looking forward to a vibrant future as community run resources.

Volunteer groups will form the friendly face of the three smallest libraries in Powys, when they are able to safely re-open the buildings under Welsh Government guidance.

Supported by local councillors, town and community councils, and other community organisations, the libraries will be embedded in the local community, and will be able to develop effectively to meet the needs of residents.

In September 2020, Powys County Council's Cabinet agreed that the council's library service will support community partnership libraries for a period of five years, to give them the stability to become established and develop.

The council's library service will provide the books and ICT resources, and library members should see very little change; they will still be able to use all of the library services and resources, including requesting books on the online catalogue.

Councillor Rachel Powell, Portfolio Holder for Young People and Culture, said: "We are really excited to support these three communities to help them to sustain their libraries, and develop them to meet local needs. We are also very grateful to the individuals and volunteers, community organisations, and local members, who have been so proactive in wanting to work with us.

"This is an example of true collaboration, co-production and partnership working, and I look forward to seeing these small libraries going from strength to strength through a deep-rooted sense of community ownership."

Councillor Gareth Jones, County Councillor for Llanfair Caereinion, commented: "I am extremely grateful to Cllr Rachel Powell and the library team for their communication from the start, they listened to the views of myself, the Town Council and the library volunteers. Working together, a bespoke solution has secured the immediate future of Llanfair Caereinion library.

"From the beginning we stated that if we were to enter into negotiations with Powys, we wanted a long-term commitment and did not want to be faced with further cuts in a year or two, so the community of Llanfair is very pleased with the five year commitment from the authority."

Until library buildings are able to re-open safely, library members are able to borrow e-books, e-audio downloads, and e-magazines online, and request books for doorstep collection or delivery through the order and collect service. For more information or help to use any of these services, visit: https://en.powys.gov.uk/libraries, call the library service on 01597 827460 or email library@powys.gov.uk.

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