Upper Norwood Library Hub face lift – UPDATE

Refurbishment work has started on the Upper Norwood Library, taking the historic 116-year-old building into its next exciting chapter. The extensive building plans include repairing the roofs and floors, and internal redecoration throughout, transforming it into a sleek, contemporary space for local people and businesses to meet, learn and socialise.

Click here to see an artist’s impression of how it’s going to look!

Situated right at the heart of Crystal Palace, the Upper Norwood Library Hub has been serving up a wide selection of activities and events for adults and children since July 2016, when the Upper Norwood Joint Library was saved and transferred into community ownership. There really is something for everyone; from Artlexia and Life Drawing, to Musical Bumps and Swing Patrol, to Digital Inclusion and English for Speakers of other Language classes. And good news: all of these will continue throughout the refurbishment – just check the Facebook page or website for more details.

The first phase of the building work on the upstairs is due to finish on 20th March, after which the phase 2 of the work, lasting 3 months, will start on the ground floor and basement. During this time there will, unfortunately, be no lending service, librarians or computer access due to the inevitable disruption and health and safety concerns. We know how important these services are to the local community and regret the inconvenience this will cause, but promise that it will be worth the wait and your patience will be rewarded!

Remember that all the Hub activities will continue in the space upstairs and Norville’s Coffee Shop will remain open, welcoming you with the same range of delicious coffee and healthy snacks. And feel free to pop by and say hi to the hub team, as someone will be there during opening hours to answer your questions.

Then, when all the works have been completed, why don’t you come in and see the results for yourself? As well as a newly decorated lending library with the same comprehensive range of literature, non-literature and children’s’ books to browse and borrow, and a fantastic new space upstairs available for hire, there’ll be loads more to discover and enjoy. There’ll be a community outreach programme, regular activities for adults and children, plus education and volunteering opportunities; and there’s more being added all the time. We’re even looking into the possibility of opening a new Library of Things where you’ll be able to come along and borrow a drill, popcorn machine or camping set all for a fraction of the price of the normal rental cost. We’d love to hear about what you’d like to see at the Library Hub too, so please drop us a line at info@unlt.org to share your ideas.

The Upper Norwood Library Hub looks forward to welcoming you very soon!

Upper Norwood Library Hub face lift begins

Great news – building works to improve the Upper Norwood Library Hub – a part of the Upper Norwood Trust’s deal with Lambeth and Croydon – are due to start.

“Inevitably it will mean some disruption to the Library Hub’s activities but at the end of it we will have a beautifully refurbished building for the community to enjoy all the activities including the library service supplied to the Trust by Lambeth Council”, says Laura Wright, Chair of Upper Norwood Library Trust.

The work has been split into two phases to reduce the disruption as much as possible. Phase one starts on January 29, when the upper floor of the building will be closed to the public so that building work can begin. Work on the first floor is scheduled to be completed in mid March.  Phase 2, on the ground floor and basement, will then start.

While the upper floor is being refurbished it may be a little noisier than usual, but visitors will still be able to reserve, without charge, non-fiction books from the library catalogue. Lambeth Council will continue to provide the library service on the ground floor, with computers, the children’s library, fiction and popular non-fiction available.

The Library Hub activities will also continue with sessions on digital inclusion; financial support; business skills; literacy with our partner Beanstalk; health and wellbeing; Artexia; life drawing; drama; swing patrol; local community access; and local history meetings, managed by the Library Hub team.

The extensive building works include repairs to the flat and pitched roofs; the brickwork; window replacement; being decorated throughout and new flooring throughout; as well as mechanical and electrical repairs through the building and the car park being re-surfaced.

“With the support of Lambeth and Croydon Councils, we will have a building fit for the 21st century”, says co Hub Director, Margaret Adjaye. “We are delighted that we will have such a great building for the Upper Norwood community who fought so hard to keep the library open,” says co Hub Director Emily Jewell.

Cllr Jack Hopkins, Lambeth’s cabinet member for Business, Culture and Regeneration, said: “This relatively short period of building work will mean the building can be a great asset for the community long into the future. The Trust have done a brilliant job so far, supported by Lambeth’s library service, in providing a real community hub for the people of Upper Norwood.”

Councillor Timothy Godfrey, Croydon’s cabinet member for Culture, Leisure, and Sport, said:  “This investment is great news as it helps secure the future of Upper Norwood Library, at a time when budget cuts mean all public services are under strain. The Trust is doing a wonderful job to protect the library service and do far more with a very special building.”

 For further information about The Upper Norwood Library Hub please contact the Library Hub team on 020 8670 4389.

For further information about the Lambeth Library Services please visit www.lambeth.gov.uk/libraries

Press contact Bryher Scudamore, Trustee, 077110 66810, bryher@me.com

Library Hub