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Exciting new chapter for Bandon’s library

January 8th, 2020 7:05 AM

By Kieran O'Mahony

One of the many groups who use Bandon Library.

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A DIGITAL hub and an exhibition space will be just some of the features of the brand new library in Bandon, which is under construction.

These details were revealed in a library report issued to councillors at a recent meeting of the local authority.

The report outlined how plans for a new library in Bandon are being progressed and said the plans are for a much larger library which will incorporate an exhibition space, a digital hub as well as an extensive children’s library and meeting room.

Cllr Kevin Murphy (FG) enquired about the progress of works commencing on the new €2.2m library for Kinsale after the report said that the tender is ‘underway’ at the site of the James O’Neill building for its transformation into a new Kinsale library.

‘It’s been hanging around for a while and what date do we have the commencement of building works? What does underway mean and can we firm up on the dates as soon as possible?’ asked Cllr Murphy.

Council chief executive Tim Lucey said that it’s at tender at the moment but could get specific times at a later date.

Councillors were also told that plans and design at Macroom’s Briery Gap Theatre and Library have progressed.

County Mayor Cllr Christopher O’Sullivan (FF) praised the library service provided by Cork County Council which has issued over 1.2m books  across the county for the first nine months of this year.

‘I have to compliment the service that is provided and as county mayor you get to see in more detail the various services that it provides,’ said Cllr O’Sullivan.

‘Library members can now even hire an instrument under ‘A Sound Initiative’ which was launched in 2017 and loans to date have been over 300. It was also nominated for ‘Best Library Service’ at the recent Excellence in Local Government Awards.’

The report outlined that current membership in the County libraries is 51,101 but would be higher except that it lost 8,720 members following the boundary extension.

The number attending libraries stood at 56,644, while the numbers of students on school visits to libraries was 18,302.

Councillors were told that the total number of instruments available under ‘A Sound Initiative’ now stood at 130 and that there is a waiting lists for many instruments so the loan period has been restricted to three weeks as a result.

The libraries currently run 42 book clubs county wide – with 28 of these meeting in a library – with 4,900 books circulated each year. Both Sherkin Island and Cape Clear have book clubs.

The council has added LGBTQ+ books to their book club stock and are in the process of starting a LGBTQ+ book club in one of their libraries.

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