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‘A really good start’ - New £600,000 South Woodford library announced

17:45 15 July 2014

South Woodford Library

South Woodford Library

Archant

A new £600,000 development to bring a new gym and refurbished library to South Woodford has been hailed as a “really good start” by the new deputy leader of the council.

The plan will see the current South Woodford Library site, in High Road, South Woodford, redeveloped into a gym and studio in the current children’s library area, which will move elsewhere in the building.

And Cllr Wes Streeting said although the thousands of pounds will have to be invested initially, the facility will generate for the new Labour-led council income over time.

He said: “It is brilliant news because we are essentially refurbishing an existing facility and a gym which will help the people of South Woodford keep fit and active.

“It is really good news all round. It is an investor-save option, so in the coming years it will generate income too.”

The library will be spread across one floor instead of three, expanding into current storage areas and the meeting room, allowing easier access to the library.

The space will also have moveable shelving and furniture so it can be used for larger events and activities which are a popular part of the library’s programme.

More than 400 library users viewed the proposals during consultation with 89 per cent supporting the new-look library.

Cllr Streeting added: “I hope the residents will be pleased with the result.”

The redevelopment follows a number of library improvements over the last few years.

Redbridge Central Library, in Ilford, Gants Hill Library and Fullwell Cross library have all been refurbished recently, with a number of improvements across the other libraries in Redbridge, too.

The reinvestment will be made back through income from gym membership, so residents can benefit from modern facilities while future gym income will be used to make savings for the Council.

Work is expected to begin in September.

More information will be available locally at the Library and on Redbridge i, www.redbridge.gov.uk

What do you think of the new redevelopment? The Ilford Recorder would love to hear your views. Please call the newsdesk on 0208 477 3825 or email harry.kemble@archant.co.uk

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