Volunteer-run community group steps up plans to take over running of Bottesford Library

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A community group is rallying more support as it steps up plans to take over the running of its village library.

The Bottesford Community Library Association has already had its outline business plan to deliver a volunteer-run service accepted by Leicestershire County Council, intending to run the service from the current library building - the Old School on Grantham Road.

And last night (Wednesday) Melton Council’s community and social affairs committee agreed to give the association £1,000 to help with its library set-up costs.

Last year County Hall encouraged groups to come forward to run 36 of its libraries, to help it save £800,000.

In its business plan the group said: “The vision is to maintain a library service and increase the use. The long-term objective is to continue to provide services and increase library membership as well as adapting the service for future technologies. Running the library as a community project will also enable people to volunteer.

“To keep the library open several thousand pounds will need to be raised each year. Activities have been planned to earn income, including setting up a friends group. Activities will have a charge or attendees will be asked to make a donation.

“Key points from consultation are that residents want longer opening hours and, if possible, more days a week and late opening one evening. New activities have been requested for all ages, with the most popular being art exhibitions, author talks and story time for toddlers.”

As well as focusing their efforts on raising funds, group members are also working towards setting the association up as a registered charity.

Following the transfer of control from the council, and subject to demand and volunteers, the association is proposing to open the library from 3pm to 6pm on Mondays, 3pm to 8pm on Tuesdays, 9.30am to 12.30pm on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays and 1pm to 4pm on Sundays.

The group has been keeping members of the Bottesford community up-to-date on its progress and fundraising events via a Facebook page, articles in parish newsletters and posters. Information packs have also been left in the library.

For more about the group, including how you can volunteer, visit its Facebook page (Bottesford Community Library) or email bottesfordcommunitylibrary@outlook.com for more details.