Fareham library closing its doors for a £130,000 revamp

CLOSED Fareham Library
CLOSED Fareham Library

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FAREHAM Library is getting a £130,000 facelift in the new year.

It will get four self-service terminals, an information point, a learning and community room and more space for extra stock.

Hampshire County Council, which runs the library, has said the changes will not result in staff cuts.

It says that the new terminals will free up staff time to help with enquiries and allow for the existing staff desks to be removed.

The refurbishment will also include new carpets, new windows and some re-decoration.

Helen Bryant, eastern Hampshire group library manager, said: ‘The idea behind self-service is that whilst it doesn’t affect the number of staff, it does change the way they perform.

‘It releases them to assist customers in more meaningful ways and the way they interact with customers.

‘It’s a simple service to use and in our libraries where it has already been installed, on the whole, people can see the benefits.

‘There’s no doubt that some people are a bit dubious at first about any new technology and are concerned about staff, but over time they can see that it hasn’t impacted on staffing numbers and they come around.’

More large print books will be put on display and £13,000 of new books will be bought.

The library will close on Tuesday, January 3 and reopen on Wednesday, February 1.

Users can borrow up to 30 books to see them through the closure, or visit nearby libraries in Portchester and Stubbington.

Loan periods will be extended through to the reopening.

The learning and community room will be available for hire as well as being used for a wide range of classes from flower arranging to French.

Councillor Keith Chapman, in charge of culture and recreation matters for the county council, said: ‘The refurbishment will give the library a new lease of life and it is hoped that the new classes, which will be held in the learning and community space, will encourage lots of new people to visit.’