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£750,000 funding secured to extend and improve Acomb Explore Library

city of York Council

£250,000 has been secured to add to the Council’s committed £500,000 capital investment to extend and redevelop Acomb Explore Library.

The additional £250k is the result of a successful application to the Arts Council’s Libraries Improvement Fund.

It will support significant upgrades to the popular library learning centre in Acomb to ensure it continues to be an important asset to the people of Acomb.

This building project will help to boost access to the library learning centre’s many valued and important services, and will maximise longer-term opportunities for Explore to generate income.

In partnership with Explore, the whole library will be fully refurbished and extended. Following a consultation with the local community back in March 2023, the following improvements will be made:

  • a larger children’s library to extend the cultural offer for families and children
  • enlarging the café area for more people to sit, meet and relax while enjoying a drink or a slice of cake
  • quiet spaces for anyone who need to work or study
  • improved toilets including an extra accessible toilet to add to the existing Changing Places facility
  • improving meeting rooms and an IT suite to support adult learning in literacy and IT to help get more adults online.
  • an area for community outdoor events
  • moveable shelving to allow for performances spaces to build on high quality shows already staged at Acomb Explore.

Full details will be brought to Executive for approval later this year.

Jenny Layfield, Chief Executive of York Explore, said: "It is great news that City of York Council has been successful in its bid for Libraries Improvement Funding (LIF) which will enable further capital improvements to the Acomb Explore Library. LIF's support underlines Explore's track record in developing York's library services so successfully over many years.

“We have now entered a period of formal confidential contract negotiations with City of York Council over the delivery of library services across York and are therefore not able to comment further at this time.”

Pauline Stuchfield, Director of Customer and Communities at City of York Council, said: “We’re investing in improved facilities with accessibility at the fore. This will help Explore deliver more services, opportunities and events to local residents. In turn these will help lower social isolation and build an even stronger sense of belonging in the community, will contribute to higher levels of literacy and employment, as well as life expectancy.”

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