Central Bedfordshire Council news and press releases

Council Executive agrees proposals to enhance Biggleswade Library

Tuesday, 2 August 2022

Our Executive Committee has agreed proposals for a £700,000 refurbishment of Biggleswade Library to provide a modern, attractive facility community hub for residents.

The proposed works will reconfigure the current library layout, making better use of the existing space and enabling additional services to be offered within the building. The changes include:

  • a bigger children’s library
  • improved information technology (IT) zone
  • increased study space
  • new books, a microfiche reading machine and self-service machines
  • improved Wi-Fi
  • a children’s centre
  • registration service
  • satellite office for our staff

To achieve this, we plan to make crucial improvements to the building including new ventilation, flooring, furniture, and shelving. The building will also be upgraded to function more efficiently and sustainably.

The decision to enhance the library and co-locate the children’s centre, registration service and a satellite office was agreed at our Executive meeting, where the results of the public consultation were reviewed.

Over 180 responses were received to the consultation and overall, comments showed support for the proposals. The comments for the library service proposals were very supportive with over 80% of respondents supporting proposals for an improved IT zone, larger children’s library, and increased ground floor library space.

On the co-location of the children’s centre and the library, 64% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that co-locating the children’s centre and the library will have a beneficial impact on young families. 46% also agreed that the co-location of the library service, children’s centre, registration service and satellite office would promote closer working.

Councillor Ian Dalgarno, our Executive Member for Community Services, said:

Libraries have a key role to play as a community hub, they act as an important focal point offering vital services for our residents. The changes to the library and the inclusion of registration services and a children’s centre will make the best use of resources in one town centre location.

We are investing significantly to upgrade the building and provide a modern library and community services for residents. We’re also creating opportunities for rewarding work, supporting those seeking work by providing computer and internet access.

A planning application will now be submitted to seek planning approval.