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Protesters will surround town hall

By Katia Harston, Chief Reporter Saturday 18th January 2014
Handover: Library campaigners ahead of handing over their petition at Barnsley Town Hall last month.

Library campaigners are planning to surround Barnsley Town Hall when councillors meet to consider the results of a consultation on relocating the central library.


About 40 members of the Hands Off Our Library campaign gathered on Saturday to plan their next steps to stop the demolition of the Shambles Street building to make way for a new £17m sixth form college.


The council's ruling cabinet meets on Wednesday, January 29 to consider the results of the consultation which if it goes ahead would see the library move to Wellington House until a permanent replacement is built elsewhere in the town centre.


The campaigners are planning to form a 'human chain for democracy' around the town hall to coincide with the council meeting that morning.


On January 25 they will be in the town centre precinct to persuade the public to take part.


Mike Grundy, one of the leading campaigners, said: "We have had a wonderful response from the Barnsley public so far.


"Hundreds have come to our protests and meetings. Now we need a huge turn out outside the town hall to convince the council leaders the democratic thing to do will be listen to what Barnsley people are saying and abandon the plan to demolish our library."

CommentsClick here to add a comment...
Posted by Jonny I Sat 18th Jan 2014 at 5:33pm

Drove past the library today, Saturday afternoon. It was completely empty. Where were all of the users that the people are protesting on behalf of, because they weren't using the library. Surely Saturday afternoon shoud be one of the busier times.

Posted by Marcia I Sat 18th Jan 2014 at 7:18pm

It's not as if they are removing the resource. Why protest about a temporary move when a NEW library will be built! It will be more upto date etc. Bringing the students into town can only be good for the towns retailers can't it??

Posted by Jonno I Sat 18th Jan 2014 at 11:49pm

I would say demolish it. It's run down and shambles street needs re development. As long as a new decent resource is built soon. Rather than being like the market project. Promised for years and nothing happens.

Posted by CP I Tue 21st Jan 2014 at 1:08pm

Well said, it needs demolishing along with the old row of shops. People like this are holding Barnsley back, they're not getting rid of the library! Told the protester the same when he was campaigning in Morrison's.

Posted by sally I Wed 22nd Jan 2014 at 9:55pm

A new library is to be built so what is all the fuss about. It will be up to date and probably used by more people. Stop moaning and find something else to do.

Posted by Pauline I Fri 24th Jan 2014 at 2:57pm

Can you trust politicians? No. Should the library be demolished? No. To remove a perfectly good building is financial madness. The £4M allocated to build the new library could be allocated to other projects elsewhere in the borough – especially in this age of public funding cutbacks. But that sounds too much like common sense to be considered by our “whiz bang” politicians. Yes, Shambles Street is a mess – a mess designed by the council in the first place. Before ‘development’ it was much like the Shambles in York – and with careful restoration, what a major plus point that could have been for tourism in Barnsley!

I especially like the comment from the guy (Johnny), who was driving his car past the library, and was alerted to the fact by his “x-ray vision”, that there was nobody inside. Nice one.

Posted by Ron I Fri 24th Jan 2014 at 3:22pm

Lol how can you see inside the library when driving past? We go every saturday and the children's library and cafe are always busy. I assume you could see into there too :-/

Posted by Victoria I Wed 29th Jan 2014 at 6:18pm

The likelihood of this not happening was practically zilch. The only way it would have not happened would have been if for some reason the college had to pull out due to lack of funds or structural considerations, then whilst the 'Hands Off' campaign may have said it was a 'victory' it would have been a hollow one, and a 'victory' only in the sense that the other pulled out.

Yep it is now official Barnsley is going to become even more of a cultural wilderness. I am not holding my breath for a new 'super-duper' library, in my lifetime!

Posted by jane hague I Thu 30th Jan 2014 at 1:01pm

as i work in the week i usually visit the library on saturday. once it is moved we probably wont pop into the town hall as well. will the fountains be full of students now i wonder ??

Posted by Robert I Sat 1st Feb 2014 at 1:50am

It's a pity to destroy such a valuable public resource just for the sake of having a "school" in the centre of town. Shame on you!

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