Southport Library

There are five possible sites in the town centre that might be able to provide a temporary Southport library if the planned redevelopment of the arts centre, art gallery and library goes ahead. The future of the Southport Cultural Centre project hinges on successfully putting together a cocktail of financial grants from various bodies. These have not yet been confirmed.

Your local councillor team David Rimmer, John Dodd and David Tattersall are planning to look at possible replacement library sites with council officers. Premises include Christ Church Hall, Lord Street and the Indoor Market. We understand that a decision on alternative library arrangements is likely to be taken in November.

As reported in the local media, millions of pounds need to be spent on essential repair and maintenance work on the arts centre and the other buildings in the block. This is exceptionally costly because it's a conservation area and original materials have to be used e.g. lead guttering, not identical-looking plastic.

The council's financial contribution towards the total cost of the major Cultural Centre revamp has been professionally estimated at no more than the cost of repairing the buildings. For the same amount of money, the facilities would be transformed. Experience in other areas has shown that top class venues and arts events attract significant numbers of visitors.

The art gallery does not meet the modern day standards required to show major visiting exhibitions. But if the scheme goes ahead, it is said that top quality international exhibitions could be staged.

We will keep you up-to-date as things develop. (October 2009)