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Library revamp

PUBLISHED: 17:33 03 September 2008 | UPDATED: 10:03 23 August 2010

artist’s IMPRESSION: The new look library. PICTURE: Burns Guthrie and Partners.

artist's IMPRESSION: The new look library. PICTURE: Burns Guthrie and Partners.

ARTISIST impressions of a £2.5 million Victorian library restoration and modernisation project have been revealed. Plans for Gravesend Library, in Windmill Street, Gravesend, were shown for the first time at a public meeting held at the venue last Thursd

ARTISIST impressions of a £2.5 million Victorian library restoration and modernisation project have been revealed.

Plans for Gravesend Library, in Windmill Street, Gravesend, were shown for the first time at a public meeting held at the venue last Thursday.

Hundreds of residents have given their views to staff members, on special comment forms or on the Kent County Council website about the scheme.

The project team will collate all comments and ideas and these will be built into the planning process.

Library manager Christoph Bull said: "We were very, very pleased with the meeting. About 30 people turned up. We got lots of ideas and views listed down so we know what the public would like for the new Gravesend Library."

The library is currently housed in a grade II listed Victorian building called the Carnegie Building which was built in 1905 by famous philanthropist Andrew Carnegie. Plans to refurbish this building will enhance and preserve all existing original features.

The building next to the library which is currently used as the reference library is in a very poor state and is beyond repair. This building will be demolished and replaced by a brand new purpose built modern building, with the refurbishment due for completion by 2010.

Mr Bull added: "I think the plans are very exciting. It's a really great mixture of the old and the new. The extra space that it will give will enable the library to provide a 21st century service.

"I have not really met any people that are not interested or not engaged with the process. It's the biggest thing to happen since the library was first opened in 1905."

Kent County Council has confirmed that when the work on the adjoining building is being carried out the library will remain in the Carnegie Building but will be moved to a shop in the town centre while the work on the Carnegie building is completed.

More consultations are planned for the coming months both in the library and at outside venues such as schools and shopping centres.

Plans will remain on display in Gravesend Library.

jason.goodyer@archant.co.uk

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