Historic mosaic discovered beneath the carpets as £650,000 work continues on Dartford’s Central Library

10:57 20 September 2016

Dartford's Central Library

Dartford's Central Library


Popular venue due to be re-opened later this year after refit of 100-year-old building

Mosaic found at Dartford libraryMosaic found at Dartford library

A long-forgotten mosaic has been unearthed on the floor of Dartford’s Central Library after workman carried out a major £650,000 refurbishment of the site.

The intricate terrazzo mosaic flooring has been uncovered under carpeting just inside the main entrance and specialists have been brought in to remove underlay and adhesive, which have hidden the impressive flooring for decades, to bring the mosaic back to its former glory.

Kent County Council agreed a refurbishment proposal for the 100-year-old library after a six-week public consultation showed huge support for it to reflect the heritage and past glories of the building.

Since it closed earlier this year for the four-month refit, library services have been temporarily moved to the nearby Acacia Sports Centre.

Mosaic found at Dartford libraryMosaic found at Dartford library

Mike Hill, KCC’s cabinet member for community services, said: “I am delighted that we have been able to include the restoration of this long-forgotten mosaic in the library refurbishment project.

“This historic multi-coloured flooring will provide an attractive feature as visitors enter the building.”

In addition, extensive parquet flooring, which was mostly hidden under carpets, has been uncovered. Although some of it is in too poor a state of repair to bring back into use, much of it within the local history section can be renewed and will also add an extra sense of history and authenticity to the restoration project.

The works involve significant improvements to the building including redecoration inspired by original paints and colours and restoring spaces dedicated to art displays and quiet study. New furniture sympathetic to the character of the building will be introduced and the original listed bookshelves are being refurbished.

A collection of historic local pictures recently acquired by Dartford Borough Council will be displayed and the Peter Blake Gallery will be fully returned to its original use as a space for exhibitions, particularly those by local artists.

Original doorways connecting the library and Dartford Borough Museum will be opened for the first time in many decades to allow users to flow between the collections.

Public facilities will be improved with toilets and changing facilities being provided, along with a new meeting room for groups and societies. A new room, the Centenary Room will be created from previously inaccessible storage areas and two well located meeting spaces will be used for deaths and births registrations.

Latest News


A Gravesend kickboxing club has two more titles under its belt

Yesterday, 17:32

The non-selective Meopham School has signalled its intention to become a grammar under Theresa May’s proposals

Yesterday, 16:55

A union official said a fingerprint recognition system used to log working hours was not working properly, with some employees not paid for an entire shift

Yesterday, 13:30

Ellenor Hospice has revealed they will be offering more financial and counselling support in line with Hospice Care Week

Most read


If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

As we grow older it becomes more and more important to have means to travel about safely and quickly. Our friendship groups and families grow and the need to have a car that is not only safe but also fast and big enough for all our needs is ever more important. There are many cars on the market for such needs but none deals with them as efficiently or as neatly as a VW Golf Estate. These cars are build strong, long lasting and spacious for a reason. They cater to the needs of many and are some of the most popular cars currently on the market.

Digital Edition

Read the Gravesend Reporter e-edition today E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up


Show Job Lists

Family Notices 24

Local business directory

Our trusted business finder